Help is sent to Turks and Caicos

| 12/09/2008

(CNS): The Cayman Islands has sent supplies, Jamaica is dispatching personnel, and Bermuda has sent troops to help the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI), which was devastated by category 4 Hurricane Ike on Sunday which destroyed more than 80% of the homes and left the airport under water, downed power lines and swept away every single boat.

On Thursday morning, 11 September, four years after Hurricane Ivan left similar levels of destruction on Grand Cayman, a Cayman Airways flight left the island loaded with around 24,500 pounds of relief supplies, including generators, tarpaulins, non-perishable foods and staple items such as toiletries and baby supplies, destined for the British Overseas Territory.

Leader of Government Business Kurt Tibbetts told the media at a press briefing Thursday that he’d been in contact with TCI Premier Michael Misick and had told him that Caymanians are praying for all in the TCI. Tibbetts said that food, water and other essentials were being sent to reduce the suffering of neighbours who now find themselves in the same plight as the Cayman Islands were after Ivan, and thanked local suppliers and Cayman Airwaysfor making the special humanitarian flight a no-charge reality.

Tibbetts said government is working closely with local Cuban-Caymanians to organise hurricane relief supplies for Cuban residents, particularly those in the Isle of Pines with whom Cayman has strong historical and family connections. He said trailer homes have also been offered to both the Turks and Caicos and Cuba.

Meanwhile Jamaica has dispatched a team of six people to TCI, drawn from the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management, the Ministry of Health, the Jamaica Public Service Company, the United States Agency for International Development, the Canadian High Commission, and the United Nations Development Programme.

And, as they did for Grand Cayman after Ivan, Bermuda is sending soldiers to Turks and Caicos in response to an informal request by TCI Premier Michael Misick. "The Premier of Turks and Caicos has made a request to the Bermuda Premier Ewart Brown for help from the Bermuda Regiment. This will probably be reflected in a formal request from the Governor of Turks and Caicos very soon," Governor Sir Richard Gozney told reporters.

"We are waiting for a more detailed assessment from Turks and Caicos of how the Regiment might help. All involved here — that is, Government House, the government of Bermuda and the Bermuda Regiment — expect that there will be a useful role for the Bermuda Regiment in helping the poor people of a sister territory in putting their lives back together," he added.

A four-member reconnaissance team from the Bermuda Regiment left for Providenciales yesterday, and Regiment Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel William White said a decision on the deployment of further troops would follow by the end of the week. Meanwhile, Bermuda’s sole power supplier, BELCO, said it has been asked by the Caribbean Electric Utility Service Corporation to send crews to reconnect power lines on the battered islands.

Premier of the British Virgin Islands Ralph T. O’Neal has told Misick in a letter, “My government stands ready to assist in any way that we can to make your restoration efforts a little easier.”

Bahamas Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham said Bahamian authorities were "already in discussions" about the extent to which assistance from The Bahamas would be necessary and required by the Turks and Caicos. "And we undertake to do all we can to ensure restoration of amenities in Grand Turk, South Caicos, can be achieved in the shortest possible time," he said.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Category: Uncategorised

About the Author ()

Comments (1)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Claudette Upton says:

    Let us not forget the devastation in Haiti, one of the poorest, if not the poorest, countries in the world, which has been battered by three storms in as many weeks and where hundreds have died. Haiti has essentially no functional government and no infrastructure. Two well-respected humanitarian organizations, one Haitian and the other international with a longtime presence in Haiti, are accepting donations for hurricane relief through their secure websites, Partners in Health ( and the Lambi Fund of Haiti ( Also I understand that the local Rotary Club is collecting donations to send to Haiti which will be distributed through Rotary within the country.