Deputy Premier Dr Natalio Wheatley has expressed that the BVI may be experiencing some of its most difficult times since slavery.
Dr Wheatley made the remark while appearing on the Virgin Islands Party’s (VIP) ‘Let’s Talk’ radio programme last evening, March 8 along with Health Minister Carvin Malone.
During the programme, Dr Wheatley highlighted that the VIP administration under Premier Andrew Fahie had just celebrated three years in office, but he moved quickly to some of the troubles the administration has had to endure within that period.
“We have made quite a number of accomplishments despite very trying circumstances. I would say this is perhaps the most difficult time the Virgin Islands has had, maybe outside of slavery, and those times maybe just right after slavery trying to build an economy and trying to survive,” Dr Wheatley said.
He continued: “But since the modern Virgin Islands, since the times of 1950 straight up until now, this is some of the most difficult times we’ve had to endure.”
Meanwhile, Malone said that he was pleased the administration was able to achieve the number of accomplishments that it had, despite the encumbrances it faced.
“We have, in this territory, quite a challenge. We have some of the normal political jaggery (sic), which is – you can’t take politics out of politics – so, you know you actually expect that,” Malone stated.
The Health Minister pointed to criticisms from the Opposition and said they would be correct in stating that all of what was promised by the VIP had not been accomplished.
However, he was quick to add that key factors were being left out of the equation.
“What they fail to always repeat”, Malone said, “is that we had to displace over $70-$80 million of actual cash and value in order to go through the particular global pandemic of which the territory itself was faced with.”
Minister Malone revealed during the programme that positive COVID-19 cases have now fallen to just three persons in the territory.
Dr Wheatley expressed that the BVI has had one of the best management systems for the COVID-19 pandemic in the entire world and suggested that the administration, along with the Health Minister, should be given due credit for their respective roles in managing COVID-19.
“It was not without casualties and that’s why we have to remain vigilant at all times,” he added.
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