Prime Minister and Minister for National Security, Dr the Right Honourable Keith Mitchell, has commended the proactive approach taken by the Ministry of Health and the Grenada Airports Authority to help ensure that the threat of the Coronavirus does not penetrate our borders.
In his Independence Day Address, the Prime Minister noted that the ease of travel and travel and the general interconnected nature of today’s world have made it easier for emerging health threats, such as this Coronavirus to affect different parts of the world.
Noting that the spread of the virus has now become a global health emergency, the Prime Minister praised the relevant local authorities for the actions being taken and their ongoing collaboration with international organisations.
Dr Mitchell said, “Here in Grenada, government has taken decisive action to help prevent this disease from penetrating our borders and affecting our people. The Ministry of Health and the Grenada Airports Authority have fully activated their response protocols and all persons arriving at our ports of entry are appropriately screened. I must commend personnel from both the Ministry of Health and the Grenada Airports Authority, who are at the frontline, ensuring that we do all in our power to prevent the potential spread of this health threat.”
The Prime Minister also acknowledged the valiant efforts being made by the President and Government of the People’s Republic of China to mitigate the spread of the virus and he underscored the importance of countries working together to address the situation.
Dr Mitchell said, “While we recognise that the epicentre of the outbreak has been identified, we should refrain from making a country the pariah. Remember sisters and brothers, all countries face challenges at some point, whether it is the impact of a hurricane as we experienced with Ivan in 2004 or the current health threat in China. What is more important is our willingness to stand in solidarity with each other when these challenges arise and seek solutions together.”
In his speech, Dr Mitchell also addressed the irresponsible actions of persons who use false information to create panic, fear and distrust among Grenadians.
Addressing the crowd gathered for the Independence Day Celebrations, Dr Mitchell said, “By making irresponsible statements that have implications for the health of the nation’s people, these persons are playing on the emotions of a population that is already concerned about their own vulnerability. They are arbitrarily fuelling fears about our own mortality and they are creating unnecessary doubt where there should be absolute clarity.”
Dr Mitchell further stated, “These are not the actions of nation-builders, these are the actions of persons who seek to cultivate division where there should be unity, and mistrust where there should confidence. Let us seek to build rather than destroy. It is well known that it takes a lot to build but a few to destroy. Some of us spend all our time trying to destroy others but we offer little or no advice on how to build. Let us choose today to pursue unity of purpose.”
The Prime Minister said togetherness is the conduit through which we will build Grenada and he referenced the words of the national anthem as he called on Grenadians to “join our heads, hearts and hands in unity to reach our destiny and to use faith and courage to aspire, build, advance.”
Office of the Prime Minister