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Oct 16, 2020

Nearly 175 B.D.F. Soldiers are Off Duty due to COVID-19

It’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic has hit the frontline workers hard. Among those who have contracted the virus are security forces personnel. Currently, close to one hundred and seventy-five members of the Belize Defense Force are off duty as a result of the virus. There are one hundred and forty who are in self-isolation; eight-one persons are awaiting COVID-19 test results and there are sixty B.D.F. members who are positive.  Today, Colonel Azariel Loria says that the numbers are improving.

 

On the Phone: Col. Azariel Loria, Deputy Commander, B.D.F.

“There were fifteen who were at a quarantine site and they are no longer there. They have been replaced and allowed to stand down because they were there in quarantine for about three weeks. Now, those guys are negative now and they have been sent on stand down and so it is reducing.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“When it comes to the situation there at Eyles Camp – I believe most or all of them were infected with the virus at some point. What is the situation with that camp?”

 

On the Phone: Col. Azariel Loria

“Right – the persons at Eyles are going on to their fourth week because it was a large group that was infected and we want to ensure that everybody is negative before we take them off quarantine. The situation as it is now, most of them are negative. We still have a few about seven or eight and they were taken out of that camp and sent to the Belmopan Training Academy because we do not want that to continue to spread among the rest. So, perhaps by end of today or next week another swab will be done and hopefully everybody will test negative.”

 

Andrea Polanco

“Colonel, have you guys been able to establish how so many of your officers are ill? Is it that they are picking up the virus on the job or perhaps when they are off duty?”

 

On the Phone: Col. Azariel Loria

“That is the hypothesis that we have been discussing here because we were deployed at the borders – and those borders are pretty much under control and there are not a lot of border jumpers anymore. We believe that it is a combination of both when they are on operations and when they are on days off relaxing. However, we are continuing to engage them that whenever they go on stand down to minimize their actions going to parties and visiting family members and such.”


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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