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Citizens Organized for Liberty Through Action opposes re-opening airport too soon

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Posted: Thursday, June 11, 2020. 3:43 pm CST.

By BBN Staff: Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) says that it sympathizes with the plight of the tourism and other associated industries that have lost thousands of jobs with no clear path to recovery.

In a statement issued today, COLA says that it condemns the campaign by Tropic Air for the government to reopen the airport.

“The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has rightfully, advised against such re-opening until a rapid test for COVID-19 is available for passengers prior to boarding. The Government was prudent in asking for such a test and it is disappointing that this effort to protect Belizeans, especially those working on the frontline, was objected to,” COLA said.

COLA then said that the assertion made by a representative from Tropic saying that the airlines will not come back if we don’t reopen now, right away, is a ‘lie’ and ‘misrepresentation.’

“The desperation of other countries in re-opening to alleviate economic pressures as seen in international media does not negate the potential impact of COVID-19 and that is something Belize simply cannot afford, especially if we do it to ourselves. Indeed, the emergence of cases 19 and 20, Belizeans who returned on cruise ship and illegally over land and tested positive on their returns, illustrates the potential of a ‘second wave’ of COVID-19, the Ministry of Health’s protestations notwithstanding,” the statement added.

COLA calls on social partners sitting on the National COVID-19 Oversight Committee and National Task Force, to stand against what it describes as the greed of a few and in the protection of Belizean people.

COLA says that the Government’s role is equally clear to continue to implement and maintain proper measures, policies and procedures.

 

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