Leader of the opposition Progressives (People’s Progressive Movement) party, Roy McTaggart has issued an urgent and heartfelt plea to those residents who have not yet taken their COVID-19 vaccine to get the jab.
Mr McTaggart said in a recorded statement on Friday, that he encourages “everyone on our islands who have not been vaccinated, to get the vaccine, as soon as possible.”
He stressed the dual necessity of the vaccine both for individual health protection as well as the public health and economic implications.
“It is really important to protect the health and wellbeing of all of us, including our loved ones. In addition, it will also ensure that we can safely reopen our borders in the months to come,” Mr McTaggart said.
“Folks, we cannot stay in a bubble forever. So again, I plead with you, please go and get vaccinated,” he urged.
The urgency of the Opposition leader’s plea came during the same week when the Chief Medical Officer Dr John Lee also voiced concern about a slowdown in the COVID vaccination rate in Cayman, especially among persons in the 16 to 50 age range.
“COVID-19 is raging around the globe but the Cayman Islands has the precious resource of vaccinations,” Dr Lee stated.
He also urged residents: “Let’s not waste this gift in the face of the world’s gaze; people are desperate for vaccinations in countries where patients can’t get enough oxygen and respiratory support.”
The UK Minister responsible for Commonwealth affairs, Lord Tariq Ahmad, in giving an update on the UK vaccine support to the Overseas Territories, also this week urged that the previously high vaccine uptake should not slacken off.
“The supply of vaccines cannot be taken for granted and each batch has a limited shelf life,” he reminded Lord Ahmad who was previously the Minister responsible for the Overseas Territories.
“In Cayman, the expiry date for the remaining vaccines is 30 June. I must therefore implore everyone who can, to take the vaccine, not only for themselves, but to protect their friends and family, and do their part to ensure you can re-open borders and restart your economy.”
The statement by Lord Ahmad was further amplified by HE Governor Martyn Roper in an official social media post this week.
“Lord Ahmad talks about the importance of taking the vaccine, not just for yourself but to protect your friends and family, and do your part to ensure we can reopen borders and restart Cayman’s economy,” Governor Roper wrote.
As Progressives leader Roy McTaggart said in his statement: “Folks, we cannot stay in a bubble forever. So again, I plead with you, please go and get vaccinated.”