(St Lucia News Online) – Opposition leader in Dominica, Lennox Linton, has said that residents of the island must close down the country’s borders themselves as a safeguard against the dreaded coronavirus (COVID-19).
On Sunday, Dominica announced its first positive case of the virus — a resident returning from the United Kingdom.
In an address to the nation on Sunday evening, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit announced that schools will be closed but said the island’s borders will remain open with the beefing up of screening and security at ports of entry.
“We shall intensify screening at our borders,” Skerrit said. “And I anticipate that in a day or two, we shall be announcing new measures and regulations with respect to the opening of our ports of entry. Suffice to say Dominica shall follow international practice and guidelines in this regard.”
But the matter did not go down well with Linton who said Dominicans must act in face of the COVID-19 threat because it is already late.
“Closing the borders of Dominica in defense against the spread of the deadly COVID-19 is all about protecting health and life for the people of Dominica,” he said on his official Facebook page on Monday morning. “If Skerrit will not close the borders of Dominica to protect the people of Dominica then the people of Dominica must close the borders of Dominica to protect themselves.”
He wrote that Dominicans must act now in the face of the situation.
“And they must act now. It is already late,” Linton wrote.
Several regional countries with positive coronavirus cases have either closed their borders or allow limited entry.
Meanwhile, Dominicans were greeted by long lines in the capital Roseau on Monday morning as business places, including supermarkets and pharmacies, limit the number of people allowed to enter.
At supermarkets, there were little signs of panic-buying but people were seen stocking up on food items, while cleaning and disinfecting agents such as bleach, soaps and detergents flew off shelves.