PM, deputy, and a minister in voluntary quarantine

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NASSAU, Bahamas (CMC) — Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis, Deputy Prime Minister K Peter Turnquest and Education Minister Jeff Lloyd have entered voluntary self-quarantine after their offices were exposed to COVID-19.

In a statement, the Cabinet Office announced that the Cecil Wallace-Whitefield Centre, which houses the Office of the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Finance and their agencies, has been closed for cleaning and sanitisation, following exposure to the virus.

“The Ministry of Health’s Surveillance Unit has initiated contact tracing to determine the level of exposure to employees and visitors to the Cecil Wallace-Whitfield Centre.” the statement said.

However, it could not be confirmed if the prime minister, the deputy prime minister have been exposed to the virus.

The statement also said that other employees of the Cecil Wallace-Whitfield Centre have been encouraged to self-quarantine until further instructions are issued by the Ministry of Health.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday, The Bahamas recorded more than 1,000 cases of the virus and government offices continued to shut down due to exposure.

In the latest update, 47 new cases have been recorded, this includes a single-day record 40 for New Providence — which recorded 144 confirmed cases last week. There were five confirmed cases on Cat Island, one on Abaco and one on Exuma.

On Monday, the Cabinet Office announced that the Ministry of Health headquarters was shut down for deep cleaning and sanitisation after officials learned that a staff member there tested positive for the virus. That person had not been to work since July 28.

“The Ministry of Health has initiated contact tracing to determine the level of exposure to employees and visitors to the buildings,” the statement said.

According to Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Delon Brennen, the ministry is expected to reopen on Monday.

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