12 February 2021
The State of Qatar making a significant donation to the people of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas yesterday. The donation of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) valued at one hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($150,000.00) was tagged as a demonstration of the Qatar Government’s deep appreciation for those who serve on the front lines of the fight against the global coronavirus pandemic, and its commitment to provide assistance to those in need.
Highlighting the long-held belief that success in the fight against COVID-19 rests with recognizing that human capital is the greatest resource we have, His Excellency Tony S. Joudi, Bahamas Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and The State of Qatar said, “This pandemic has really brought people closer to one another, it requires social distancing, but really it has brought people closer to one another. One country is asking for help from another country and another country is providing this help, so we are grateful to the State of Qatar and to the Emir himself who has shown great interest in the state of the country and has had his nephew visit the Bahamas to show solidarity with the country (The Bahamas).”
The PPE supplies which were purchased from Bahamian medical supplies vendor, Ports International, will be distributed to frontline health workers across the public health system. Ambassador Joudi publicly expressed thanks to Permanent Secretary Carl Smith of the Ministry of Disaster Preparedness, Management and Reconstruction, for his efforts to source the PPE supplies locally, as investing in Bahamian companies was a priority for the Government of Qatar.
Joudi summarized the donation by saying, “ So we are here today in this PHA warehouse and we are looking at this product that came imported from the US, via, a Bahamian company, Ports International; and we were able to get the donation via the State of Qatar through their Embassy in Cuba.”
PS Smith noted that the donation resulted from a collaboration between the Ministry of Disaster Preparedness, Management and Reconstruction, through the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Ministry of Health (MOH) and its partner the Public Hospitals Authority through the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC). He recalled, “Ambassador Joudi reached out to me and asked how we could assist the State of Qatar’s desire to reach out and assist the Bahamas. I collaborated with Ministry of Health officials to say that the State of Qatar had this offer and how they would like this offer to be expended, because they had provided $150,000.”
Officially receiving the supplies on behalf of the PHA was Deputy Director of the Supplies Management Agency, Audley Bain who expressed appreciation on behalf of the Public Hospitals Authority, “This product that we have received from the State of Qatar, it is top quality, so we are really grateful to the people of Qatar, and this is just a great day for us. As we continue to fight the pandemic, these items will go a long way in helping us to do what we need to do. We know 3M, it is great product, it has been around for years, so we say thank you, thank you, thank you.”
The Supplies Management Agency (SMA) of the Public Hospitals Authority (PHA) took possession of the PPE at the PHA’s warehouse on Bacardi Road on Wednesday, February 10th during a very brief handover ceremony.