Ragged Island update: Ragged Island residents protest at OPM
Illegal Haitian migrants apprehended earlier this week are presently at the Royal Bahamas Defence Force base and will be sent to Ragged island before being sent back to Haiti after they are joined by remaining illegal migrants on Inagua. It’s a done deal, as migrants were screened but not tested and there are no plans to test them before repatriation.
More than 20 frustrated residents of Ragged Island showed up outside the Office of The Prime Minister with placards today to protest a decision by the government to send a group of illegal Haitian migrants to Ragged Island before repatriating them to Haiti.
Holding up fluorescent placards that read “Protect Ragged Island”, “3 years - no nurse or clinic” and “Keep Ragged COVID-free”, residents hope to persuade the government not to bring the illegal migrants on their island, which is one of the few remaining islands with no confirmed cases.
29 undocumented migrants were apprehended on a cay earlier this week and are expected to be taken to Ragged Island this weekend before being sent back to Haiti.
Foreign Affairs officials have not indicated if the migrants have been tested for the coronavirus.
Residents fear that if any of those migrants are infected and spread COVID-19 to their island, it would put the lives of residents at great risk as they still have no medical facilities and personnel since Hurricane Irma barreled over Ragged Island.
Ragged Island MP Chester Cooper raised the matter in the House of Assembly on Thursday and urged the government to rethink this ill-advised move.