Leader of the Opposition Hon. Mathew Wale is calling on the government to put a stop to exemptions for international cargo boats.

“The cases of Cheffoo and Papa Mau reveal weaknesses in our preparedness and response systems. No international ship should be granted exemptions anymore – a no risk approach.

“We have been blessed that the virus has not come outside the quarantine stations. Government has done reasonably well in containing the virus to the quarantine stations.

“I think there is risk presented from the management of international freighters coming to the country,” the Opposition Leader said.

He says one wrong decision by the oversight committee nearly resulted in community transmission.

Wale says that by now all front liners should be all fully vaccinated. And when dealing with international shipping the Ports CEO should be included in the oversight committee or at the very least be consulted.

“There is a need to harmonize the agencies and their jurisdictions over international shipping to ensure there are no gaps.

"There seems to be a personal problem between the Comptroller of Customs and the Ports CEO that is having a direct impact on the information flow between these agencies.

“It is important to the health safety of this country that this pettiness is addressed,” Wale said.