Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, Dale Marshall, has stood by a decision to publicise the names of three prison officers who failed to carry out an instruction to report to the St. Philip facility for COVID-19 testing.
Mr. Marshall explained tonight that HMP Dodds was considered a part of the disciplined forces in Barbados, and as such, there were certain protocols, rules and regulations which governed the conduct of prison officers.
“A prison officer is not a clerical officer in the public service. Specific instructions were given; based on my understanding, those instructions were not followed by the prison officers.
“They were required to report to the prison facility for testing. They were so informed, and it was not done, and then they could not be located. The individuals were all located by the Royal Barbados Police Force’s efforts last night, [and] they would have been sent to the facility that was established for that purpose,” he stated.
On New Year’s Day, Minister of Home Affairs, Information and Public Affairs, Wilfred Abrahams, made a call for the three to come forward for testing, and urged anyone who knew of their whereabouts to encourage them to do so.
This comes on the heels of several prison officers testing positive for the virus, resulting in all persons – prison officers, prisoners, and civilian staff – being tested by the Ministry of Health and Wellness.
There are currently 161 confirmed cases from that facility, and others are awaiting their second test.