PM Tours Areas Devastated by a Tornado in Grand Bahama
Authored by: Robyn Adderley
Source: Bahamas Information Services
Date: September 14, 2017

 

FREEPORT, Grand Bahama - Members of the Government, the Opposition, and NEMA are working together as a team to improve the quality of life for Bahamians, said Prime Minister of The Bahamas, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis during a statement to the press following a tour of the areas destroyed by a tornado on Sunday.

           

Prime Minister Minnis, along with members of his Cabinet, NEMA, and other senior government officials, on Thursday, September 14, toured Bimini and then Freeport to view damage done caused by Hurricane Irma, including the impacts of tornadoes.

 

Accompanying the Prime Minister and his team was Leader of the Official Opposition, the Hon. Philip 'Brave' Davis, whose presence Prime Minister Minnis said was important as he too would have seen the problems.

           

While the codes in place are good, enforcement is very important the Prime Minister stressed. While visiting the homes destroyed by the tornado, they noticed the hurricane straps were not properly placed and the trusses were not consistent.

           

In Bimini, he said, there was some damage to docks resulting in floating foam in the waters. These matters, he continued, must be investigated to see what may have contributed to this happening so that it does not recur.

           

He said, "What that points out to me is that we possibly have excellent codes but our enforcement is not in place. And we must improve on our inspection, and that is very serious."

           

"All of us would work together, NEMA, the Opposition, ourselves and we have one job, one purpose, and that is to improve the lives of Bahamians…. It's a learning experience, and whomever is in power would have the responsibility to ensure that the enforcements are there.”

           

The Prime Minister reiterated that working as a team, great things could be accomplished.  “Who would have thought that as a team The Bahamas, as small as we are, would succeed in evacuating individuals from throughout the Bahamas by airlift. It's never been done before, and we were the first to go down in history to be successful."

 

Although there were some errors and some things could have been done better, in future, he said, in working together "we will most certainly have a more powerful, strong, beautiful  Bahamas."

           

After arriving in Grand Bahama shortly after 12:30 p.m., the Prime Minister, Cabinet Ministers, Members of Parliament and other senior government officials first went to Imperial Park where a number of homes were hit by a tornado on Sunday.

           

The residents had the opportunity to speak with the Prime Minister and state their needs and concerns.

           

A luncheon was held at Pelican Bay Hotel; and following his brief statement to the press, the Prime Minister and his delegation departed for their next destination at about 3:00 p.m.

 

Prime Minister Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis, arrived in Grand Bahama on Thursday afternoon for a tour of the areas destroyed by Hurricane Irma and resulting tornadoes.  Minister of State in the Office of the Prime Minister, Senator the Hon. Kwasi Thompson, and Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, the Hon. Michael Pintard, are seen greeting the Prime Minister and his delegation. (BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)

 

Viewing destruction by the tornado in Grand Bahama on Sunday, Prime Minister Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis on Thursday met with home owners and then discussed the matter with his colleagues. Shown from left are: Minister of State for Grand Bahama in the Office of the Prime Minister, Senator the Hon. Kwasi Thompson;  Prime Minister Minnis; Rev. Frederick MacAlpine, MP for Pineridge; and Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Works and MP for Central Grand Bahama, Iram Lewis. (BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)

 

Following a tour of the damaged areas in Freeport and a brief lunch, Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis on Thursday made a statement to the media, explaining what he seen and commending the team work displayed. (BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)

 

Ernestine McPhee, one of the homeowners whose house was destroyed by a tornado on Sunday, explained to Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis the difficulties she has encountered over the past four days. Also present was Minister of State for Grand Bahama in the Office of the Prime Minister, Senator the Hon. Kwasi Thompson. (BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)
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