Minister Ming: ‘Concerning & Disappointing’

June 9, 2021 | 28 Comments

[Updated] “Very concerning and extremely disappointing,” said the Minister of National Security Renee Ming regarding the “many videos, social media posts and messages circulating highlighting yesterday’s Revolve boat event.”

While the Minister confirmed that a large group gathering exemption was granted to the organisers to host the event, she said “there were specific guidelines in place that attendees had to follow.

A spokesperson said, “More importantly there were clear law violations at the event, because under the current regulations, raft ups are not permitted at any time. As a note:

  • Restrictions on boating activity 17[4] – No person shall tie a boat to another boat [raft up] for recreational purposes.

“The guidelines and exemption for the event can be found in the Official Gazette Notices via www.gov.bm.

This afternoon Minister Ming said, “I have seen the many videos and social media posts circulating today. This is concerning and disappointing because yesterday was only day three since we went into Phase 3 of the Public Health [Covid-19 Emergency Powers] [Phased Re-Opening] Regulations 2021.

“The regulations governing public events are clear and have been established for the protection of our community in the midst of this global pandemic. I have referred this matter to the Bermuda Police Service for a full and thorough investigation, and based on their findings, to take any necessary enforcement action.

“Lastly, the Government has worked tirelessly to mitigate and control the community spread of the Covid-19 virus. It is an everyday effort. We know that the vast majority of our community are compliant with the regulations in place, and are taking the right and necessary steps to protect themselves and their families. In that regard, the Ministry appreciates the patience, collaboration and support of the public and thanks them for their cooperation.”

Update 6.00pm: The police said, “The Bermuda Police Service can confirm an investigation into this incident has commenced. It would not be prudent to make any further comment pending the outcome of that investigation.”

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You can find more information on the links below and also on our dedicated website BermudaCovid.com, which is the most comprehensive resource and historic record available of Bermuda’s handling of the pandemic.

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Comments (28)

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  1. MADDOG says:

    Well done…we all knew that there would be some who would tear the behind out of it…so now the rest of us have to suffer the consequence for a few selfish individuals who don’t give toss about anyone else. So when Government start saying no to exemptions and applying restrictions again you can blame yourselves for that….thank you so much for only caring about you.

  2. Question says:

    Well you weren’t concerned about Burt having a mask-free champagne party last month. That’s “different” I suppose.

    • Sailor says:

      That was on land this is one the water where it is much more dangerous and the covid comes out an hour earlier

      • question says:

        Putting to one side your absurd suggestion that virus spread is ‘more dangerous’ when on water, there is no other difference. Blunder Burt was breaking covid laws. Clearly, and without question. Unmistakably.

        Yet for some unexplained reason Ming wasn’t “concerned and disappointed” then.

  3. Serve them right says:

    In the early stages of Covid the plp were advised to have covid Marshalls with an orange vest and a bull horn and set of rules attached to a $5000 payment refundable if the Marshall and people did their duty of social distancing. They threw it in the trash so why are they complaining?

    • Loquat tree says:

      Refundable Covid-19 fee is a great idea! Make it much higher though and fully refundable if all rules applied with.
      If not, evidenced by verified reports, photos etc., then your fee is kept to offset the Covid costs of government drafting and enforcement of the rules. You would also still be liable to prosecution.
      -That might stop the abuse!

  4. These people are supposed to have this exemption from June 6th to 11th, and because protocols have been broken, all other activities that was granted should be blocked from going ahead, and the persons who applied for the exemption be held accountable for the policies , rules, regulations and laws that were breached.

    Government Minister of Tourism should be made to answer and resign. We are almost a year when Minister Zane Desilva and Minister Wayne Caines were both made to resign for far less, so we expect nothing less then Government Minister of tourism to resign.

    • Paul says:

      IS it time fr the dictator to say so long bye bye?who would you all like to see replace him?

  5. Geeno Felino says:

    ‘bad optics’ when it’s the Govt, but ‘very concerning & extremely disappointing’ when it’s anyone else….

    Is the plan to punish Bermudian tour boat operators who have been suffering all year, or a group of influencers with a large social media following who are busy are promoting the island? Sure, that’ll get the public on board with these ludicrous phase 3 regulations.

  6. Ringmaster says:

    The MNS appears to be completely useless. She didn’t know about the exemption given to the St Regis to keep working and now she gives multiple special exemptions to Revolve, and then apparently has no clue that a boat raft up might take place. The Minister of Tourism is no better as he flouted the rules at the opening of the St Regis. Why no police investigation into that? Time for another round of firings.

  7. RastaCutty says:

    Question for the Minister. Isn’t it a rule that they have to hire locals as photographers and videographers for such a shoot and if not they have to get work permits? Maybe they have work permits but just seems like they flew in with an international film and photography crew. Hire locals.

  8. dunn juice says:

    do as i say not as i do

  9. Question says:

    The term ‘raft up’ has no meaningless. It’s slang.

  10. Sailor says:

    “highlighting yesterday’s Revolve boat event.”

    At least the minister can now distinguish a boat from a jet ski….small steps people

  11. Mark says:

    gimme a break. The raft up prohibition is stupid and everyone knows it. So you can have 50 people inside with no masks but you cant have a few boats with less than that….outside! Dumb dumb dumb

  12. Pissed Off says:

    heads need to roll all the way around. ludicrous that most of us have busted butt and followed and SUFFERED and then this. BS some govt,some private enterprise, the organizers , and even participants need to be dealt with HARSHLY and QUICKLEY.

  13. Confused says:

    So what is the difference between a gathering with 50 people and a raft up with 50 people? It’s still just 50 people, shouldn’t matter if on land or water.

  14. Sailor says:

    What is the vendetta against boats and raft ups?
    I can have 25 people on one boat or at my house but not 25 people on 2 boats tied together? So for the Heros weekend I will be having 25 people on 1 boat….it don’t make sense.
    I thought the coast guard were meant to patrol the boating community. Apparently it is too difficult for them to handle this. Can we get them math lessons so they can count the number of people on the raft up.
    The coast guard is not a volunteer organization
    We pay them….and quite a bit
    Is it not easier to spot a party on a raft up them a house party.
    Is it not easier to count people on a raft up then at a house party where the people can easily run away from the house
    Would we be having these issues if it was still the marine police on the water as the police seem more able to count than the coast guard

  15. Sailor says:

    That was on land this is one the water where it is much more dangerous and the covid comes out an hour earlier

  16. Baffled says:

    Minister of “UNAWARE” National Security, you need to exit along with your “Skirt the question” leader. We’re tired of your “Do as I say, not as I do”
    OUT WITH THIS REGIME NOW!!

  17. Ringmaster says:

    The rule against “raft ups” is not for health reasons but because they can’t be monitored according to Premier Burt. The Coastguard have a happy time all day cruising around doing nothing useful. If the Minister knew what her role is, why didn’t she have the Coastguard monitor the event? It was not open to the public and was granted under the Safekey programme, so why the hyprocisy?

  18. sandgrownan says:

    The Minister really is…. Both she and the Premier have essentially said “it looks like the law has been broken.” That’s essentially a get out jail free card if anyone is charged since they’ve stupidly prejudiced the outcome.

    Secondly, she appears to have zero clue about this group or whether or not it was approved.

    Third, as others have said, “raft-up” is slang, there’s no definition. We sort of understand what it means but it’s open to interpretation and doesn’t stand up to any sort of scrutiny.

    And finally, the raft up “rule” is mind-numbingly stupid. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

  19. enough says:

    Out of interest, just how many of the 70 or more people who flew into the island and maybe are still here were vaccinated. Is that the reason the mandatory vaccination at a hotel for non vaccinated persons was not put into effect on the 6th and extended to the 12 to accommodate this bunch. There is certainly some explainingg to do and I suggest they do it sooner rather than later.

    • Ringmaster says:

      Bernews has printed the Government’s reason for moving the date from June 6 to the 13th. Being polite, it is not believable and defies common sense. Essentially the date was moved because it takes 3 days to complete the paperwork. The spokesperson seems to have overlooked that the requirement was made public 6 weeks prior, at the end of April.

      • question says:

        It was moved so as to make things more convenient for the returning Bermuda football team.
        Proving that the absolute last thing Burt cares about is the health of Bermudians. He is incapable of leading properly.
        Notice how they ‘conveniently’ didn’t have a press conference this week. Blunder Burt is hoping the press forget all these mistakes, mis-steps and blunders.

  20. Guy Carri says:

    THE SAINT REGIS EVENT WAS AGAINST SAFEKEY PROTOCOLS. It was not “maybe bad optics.” It was against their own laws! It just didn’t matter because the premier wanted what he wanted and there is no recourse. There is no penalty!!!
    The premier is arrogant. He is a dictator in the making and most cannot see it!
    The PLP is lost.
    PLP – get rid of your leader. He is not what we voted for!

  21. kevin says:

    sometimes i sit in wonder and read and listen …some of the green machine followers are upset , its not about the economy , its truly not about human rights , but its about the travel protocols …amazing…so look for every little thing to throw at their illustrious leader …what a bunch of clowns those voted for and those who voted for them

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