ANTIGUA & BARBUDA TO ACCEPT 250 VINCENTIANS FLEEING VOLCANIC ERUPTION
With information coming out of St. Vincent & The Grenadines that an explosive eruption began at the La Soufrière Hills volcano this morning, April 9, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda has offered to accommodate 250 Vincentian nationals.
Reports coming out of St.Vincent indicate that the eruption is the culmination of seismic activity that began on April 8.
It was noted that the eruption is ongoing and more information will be shared as things progress.
Ralph Gonsalves, the Prime Minister of the impacted country, reportedly spoke to Prime Minister Gaston Browne yesterday, concerning what assistance could be offered to accommodate the Vincentians.
And the Director of the National Office of Disaster Services (NODS), Philmore Mullin, says that Antigua and Barbuda is prepared to welcome them.
Mullin says that logistics have been worked out on this end and coordination is taking place in Kingstown.
Mullin says that a space at the Jolly Beach Resort has been reserved to house the displaced Vincentians.
As to how soon the country will begin to see the arrival of these persons is still a challenge, Mullin says, since the situation in St. Vincent is still fluid.
However, once they arrive, everything will be done to ensure that they are comfortable, Mullin says.
The NODS Director says that discussions are currently taking place regarding further assistance to the Vincentians while they are here.
Mullin says that those coming here will first be tested, in St. Vincent, for the COVID-19 virus. Another test upon their arrival is also possible.
He says, further, that discussions have been held to ensure that persons are vaccinated before arriving on island. This, however, does not impact the Government’s decision to accept them in this time of crisis.