Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, Dr Hubert Minnis says New Providence, “the economic engine” of his country is still functioning.
Speaking in an interview on MSNBC Tuesday evening, September 3, Dr Minnis said he was “grateful” that New Providence, which he called the economic engine of the country, still functions. New Providence, the location for the capital Nassau and its primary business district is also home to a large part of the country’s tourism infrastructure. It has suffered no damage from the hurricane.
In the interview, Dr Minnis reported on an aerial tour he had done over Abaco, the first section of the chain of 700 islands smashed by Hurricane Dorian. He said the runway of the airport there was underwater and the area “has been decimated.” Dr Minnis told the interviewer, Rachel Maddow that he estimated that 60 per cent of the houses had been either destroyed or damaged. He said an area where hundreds of Haitians settled was also badly hit.
He said there was no access between the airport there and the main road. Dr Minnis said he had not yet been able to visit Grand Bahama where Dorian sat or, as he said, “went to sleep” for more than a day. He said: “We expect to find quite a bit of devastation there.” He will visit Grand Bahama today, Wednesday.
Dr Minnis said Bahamians were a resilient people and would rebuild the country.
In an earlier press conference in the Bahamas, the Prime Minister said he had been getting messages of sympathy and support and mentioned, specifically, a Royal Navy ship due in Tuesday night with food and other supplies. He also said pledges to help had come from the United States Government.
The hurricane moved away from Bahamas Tuesday afternoon but storm conditions remained in part of the group of islands up to Tuesday night making rescue and recovery difficult.