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Apr 3, 2020

Mayor Earl Trapp on Cayo COVID-19 Case

At least twenty persons have been included so far in the mapping exercise relating to the fourth person carrying the virus; this includes his immediate family members and those individuals he came in contact with at work in Belize City. The west has been devastated by the news.  San Ignacio Mayor Earl Trapp says the individual also conducted business at the town council in recent days. Trapp’s message to everyone is to stay home. Here is News Five’s Hipolito Novelo with a report from San Ignacio.


Hipolito Novelo, Reporting

San Ignacio/Santa Elena recorded its first COVID-19 case and the fourth for the country today.


Earl Trapp

Earl Trapp, Mayor, Santa Elena/San Ignacio

“I have always been preaching to the people that we must not panic. All we can do is to be extremely cautious and be careful in what we do. Bit when I learnt of it, it certainly made me think different, I felt different as well.”


And downtown San Ignacio town was different today. There was movement but little. A group of persons formed a line in front of Quick Stop, keeping their distance. Shoppers were out and about and so were police officers and B.D.F. soldiers. Some wore masks, others did not. At the market, residents stocked up on fruits and vegetables. Were they aware that the patient four is a fifty-five-year-old San Ignacio male?  It is that this case might be a community case, which means that the possibility of more cases is very real and the threat of an outbreak has gotten more serious.


Earl Trapp

“It’s home now and the sad part is that we don’t know whom this person may have been in touch with or inadvertently  and in advertently we can become infected. So I see it as unfair when Ministry of Health will not release the names of the infected people of which it has it pros and its cons.  Because what you don’t want is to come in contact with the person who is infected and inadvertently you get infected and that is where the thing begins to spread. I think we must get to the point whereby the names will begin to be announced and people will appreciate, acknowledge and respect and that will help us to better control the spread of this virus.”


And Mayor Earl Trapp says that for the COVID contagion to be contained, residents need to adhere to the state of emergency rules, stay home and maintain social distancing practice. Patient four had fever, mild cough and difficulty breathing five days ago. He works in Belize City and had been traveling back and forth.  He is currently in an isolated area within the Western Regional Hospital compound. A flu clinic has been set up outside for people who are experiencing symptoms. But Patient Four is said to be in an isolated room like this one. The Ministry of Health says that the designated areas within the hospital’s compound will be used to manage COVID-19 cases.  Meanwhile, Mayor Trapp and his council has partnered with Commanding Officer Superintendent Henry Jemmott to enforce the S.O.E. regulations.


Earl Trapp

“He has brought in the Belize Defence Force and he has brought in the Ministry of Immigration. They have been setting up the checkpoints and as well they have been manning the illegal port of entries within San Ignacio. I can say that they have made several arrests for people crossing the western border illegally. They have made several arrests. They have been patrolling, the streets, the market, the villages and like I said the illegal port of entry areas.  I think some people are a little reluctant. While some are adhering to the advisories others are taking it for granted. Now with this case evolving within San Ignacio and Santa Elena I am very much certain that the general population here will take things more seriously.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Hipolito Novelo.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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