Over 40 members of staff at the Office of the President have undergone tests for COVID-19 and several have tested positive.
This was revealed by President’s House yesterday, although it was not revealed how many staff members had actually tested positive.
President Paula-Mae Weekes last week entered self-quarantine after her aide-de-camp recently tested positive for COVID-19.
However, earlier this week it was revealed that Weekes’ test was negative
Contact tracing began immediately after the aide-de-camp tested positive and all buildings on the compound were sanitised and testing of other staffers conducted.
Yesterday, the statement from President’s House said after the aide-de-camp tested positive, over 40 personnel had been tested for the virus “with several testing positive.”
The statement added, “The Office of the President has reviewed the conduct of the recent events held at the President’s House and is satisfied that all pandemic protocols—face masks, sanitising, social distancing—were strictly observed and risk to external persons negligible.
“President Weekes and all staff members (including those who have tested positive) remain in good spirits.|
It added that the office continues to function with a skeleton staff and all public engagements have been postponed until the all-clear is received from the Ministry of Health. Testing of staff continues, the release said, adding some staff were operating from home as a precautionary measure.
The aide-de-camp who fell ill had acted as master of ceremonies at the swearing-in of the new Cabinet on August 19 and when the Opposition Leader received her instruments on August 25. But he used a different podium and microphone than the politicians. He also didn’t attend the ceremonial opening of Parliament on August 28.