By Christopher Tobutt
Hon Premier Wayne Panton, flanked by a whole host of government ministers and VIPs came to Owen Roberts International Airport on Saturday 7 May led a big drive to get at least 70% of the country vaccinated so that Cayman can reopen soon. While quite a few of the Ministers and MP’s that make up the new government have already received both of their jabs, quite a few were coming to get their first or second doses. The Government is urging everyone over 16 to come and get their first dose of the 2-dose covid-19 vaccinations before June 9, so that as many as possible can be vaccinated before the current shipment from the UK effectively expires.
Premier Panton said: “Taking the vaccine is key to our plan to reopen the borders to start our tourism industry, and it is really the only solution moving forward. It is obviously a public health issue, but at the end of the day it translates to a global economic crisis, too.
“This is the only solution, moving forward. We have to get to a point where we have the maximum number of people who are vaccinated. At some point in the coming months we have to have a plan for the reopening of our borders and central to that plan to restore a normal economy is having a well-vaccinated population – there’s just no getting around it. We’re leading from the front and have to make sure that as a government, we are all fully vaccinated, to show the way forward for the rest of the country. Please do your part, and be part of the solution.
Rolling up their sleeves were Chris Saunders, the deputy premier and Minister of Economic Development and Labourm and while Kenneth Bryan, Minister of Tourism and Transport, as well as East End Member of Parliament, Isaac Rankine.
Chief Medical Officer Dr. Lee said, “Its really good news that so many of the people have come out today to take the vaccine. We’re getting through our last remaining doses and we really want to make sure that we use them up, because they are a real gift to all of Cayman to protect us from the coronavirus.
His Excellency the Governor, Martyn Roper was also encouraging everyone to come and get vaccinated. “This is really important and I’m really thankful to Premier Panton and his team encouraging our community to take the vaccine. We have an incredible opportunity with our supply of vaccines from the UK but they do expire at the end of June. So you have to have your first dose by the ninth of June, so you can have the second dose at the end of June. Otherwise we will have to waste some of the vaccines which, when you look around the world would be a crying shame.”
Sabrina Turner, Minister of Health and Wellness. I want to say that this event is very important today and we are really encouraged as well, there has been a lot of effort into getting the uptake of vaccines. When we look globally and see what’s happening we have a golden nugget here that is about to expire and we really hope that the message is sent out clearly here in combination with what is happening globally then the people will realize how blessed we are to have a vaccination like this that is highly sought-after.”