Government Fearful Of Backlash If They Deport Tourists For Not Wearing Masks


The government is looking at options to deal with visitors who refuse to wear masks and while they are not ruling out deportation, they fear the repercussions it could have on the tourism sector.

Reports have surfaced, especially on social media, of tourists being on excursions, in restaurants, at hotels and even in the city without the protective face wear.

Minister of Information Melford Nicholas says the wearing of masks also applies to tourists but admits that the enforcement of the protocol has been a challenge.

Nicholas says visitors might be required to give consent to the wearing of masks prior to arriving in Antigua. Once that is in place, they would be subject to action if they fail to abide by the protocol while here.

According to the Information Minister, the government is not ruling out deportation as an alternative action.

However, Nicholas says he is mindful that this could result in a fallout, and the country would not want such negative publicity at this time.



  1. Dear Mr. Minister and friends,

    If the law of the land is to wear a mask in public, the Tout, Moun, Sam and Bag-i have to follow it or face the consequences. Especially when it’s a matter of national security. Why are we afraid to enforce or laws against these people? For $2?!?!?

    I remember clear as day when then minister of tourism John Maginley was on a radio show some years ago addressing the Hungry Bird incident. I listened with shock and disbelief as the minister struggled to articulate that they had broken the law and should have been punished as such instead of the free pass they essentially got. Mind you we Antiguans, even you Mr. Minister cannot go to their country and pick and choose which laws you want to follow without facing repercussions. We need to take our country seriously or no one else will.

  2. One rule for them; one for us. Creating further division; where’s the solidarity ??
    Big dirty chupse!

  3. Oh please! Where does this madness end? We cannot expect to have two sets of rules, one for the tourist and one for residents!!!! Corona virus is NOT an Antigua disease. Corona virus has affected evert dingle corner of this world and there are basic rules and protocols that everyone is aware of and expected to follow. White or Black visitors to Antigua who refuse to wear a mask as prescribed by law should be immediately deported or arrested/charged. I will not support the need-the-money argument!!! Tourists should never be allowed to dictate the terms of their stay in any country. Come on politicians, don’t make us all look like fools!!!!!

  4. So, tourists come, shed off the virus, we get more sick, and they done home to leave us with the fall out?? What kind of weak government is this???

  5. Lol. If there are guidelines for entry and they dont want to adhere let them go back to their place of origin. We know governance is not a strong point but this is ridiculous.

  6. Is Antigua and Barbuda a real country? What nonsense is this that a visitor will be required to give consent to wearing a mask prior to coming to Antigua and Barbuda. Wearing a mask is the law and that is all the visitor needs to be told before coming to Antigua and Barbuda. If the visitor then comes to Antigua and Barbuda and breaches the law by not wearing a mask, then the consequences should follow as with all the other residents who have paid $5000 for breaching the law. It looks as if we will sell our soul and sovereignty at the alter of tourism.

    • …at, the altar of classism, racism, superiority, inferiority and WHITE privilege; but, then again, this has being the “norm” in the Nation, so, why would this be surprising.

      Da Bastard Syndrome, in full effect!

    • It’s all about money… Getting money is the first law in this country. Its law for Antigua to wear a mask so anyone not wearing it gets fined. If tourist wearing a mask means they stay away and antigua gets nothing, then the first law of money wins and tourist need not wear a mask as long as they come and spend that money.

  7. Seriously?!! Avoid fallout with widely infected countries OR save lives? Covid-19 protocols are globally familiar so those rebel tourists either need to fall in line or stay away. When was the last time you heard Trump or any leader of larger countries nervous about fallout with our little Caribbean territories? They’d check our reckless behavior unapologetically. All revenue is not worth the risk.

  8. Time for us to grow a spine & stand on our own two feet or continue to bow to these larger economies.

  9. Sorry guys, the wearing of face masks in Antigua and Barbuda is mandatory. That means it is the law for everyone in our country. Tourists read travel advisories and it states it clearly. Protect our people, they MUST wear masks.

  10. …BEGGARS, can’t be CHOOSERS!
    …beggars, can’t be CHOOSERS!
    …BEGGARS, can’t be choosers!
    …#Beggars, CAN’T BE choosers!

    COVID-19, you’re a GODSEND, as you expose these overseers, and how they practice CLASSISM & RACISM, against their own people.
    Many of Us have being saying, that this type of behavior has being the norm in the Nation.
    This is one reason, why these same tourist($) can come to Our Nation, and get the lions share, of Our resources, when they decide to return and do business.

  11. @ Ras Smood
    Just keep your asinine thoughts to yourself! Unfortunately we have no masks to protect ourselves from your kind of pollution.

    • @Anon…you should try, and make me keep my thoughts to myself! They must have struck you like a silver bullet; and, if that’s the case, your spirit world
      of fire will be welcoming you with open arms….
      Take a seat, on this 🌵🌵🌵 in the mean time, and enjoy the show!

  12. This pains me almost beyond words.

    The government — and people of Antigua and Barbuda — must be unequivocal in its insistence that the laws of the land must be followed, backlash or no backlash. It is a matter of self-respect.

  13. Antigua government is always chatting nonsense .. you cannot deport someone for not wearing a mask. They just chat so much foolishness it’s embarrassing .. just like trump

    • If Antigua is a sovereign country and a visitor is required to wear a mask, then yes, Antigua can deport them. In fact, Antigua should deport them because being a visitor is a PRIVILEGE, not a right. Slavery ended in 1834 so you don’t have to bow to them anymore. Well, you shouldn’t have to anyway but to each his own.

  14. And all the Antiguan/ Barbudan nationals all follow the law of the land? ,take a walk around down town St John and spot the non compliance of the rules being broken by both locals and forei ners alike. People in glass houses should not throw stones!

    • I say to you as I said to Ms Mention, if Antigua is a sovereign country and a visitor is required to wear a mask, then yes, Antigua can deport them. In fact, Antigua should deport them because being a visitor is a PRIVILEGE, not a right. Slavery ended in 1834 so you don’t have to bow to them anymore. Well, you shouldn’t have to anyway but to each his own.

  15. Deport and fine them! Every country have standards and laws and if they are broken the price must be paid. This steppin fetchin dance from Antigua government ministers is shameful. Grow a spine and stand for something! Anyone breaking the law should be fined or put on the next flight back. Its their loss…many of them are broke bottom barrel dwellers anyway. Please…SMH

  16. This summarises American tourists for you, in la la land as usual with everything resulting in a law suit here and a law suit there… Look when other tourist start to come Antigua, they’ll comply, just saying…

  17. Maybe I’m crazy but I thought the whole point of being an independent sovereign nation was that you have your own government, your own laws and you can have some say in the future of your nation. Now, this “independent nation” is afraid of enforcing their own laws during a pandemic ? Wow! This government might as well beg the U.S. to make them an overseas colon…..oh, sorry, the PC term is territory. Sad!

  18. It always boggles the mind how black people in power can strut on the necks of their own black people willy nilly, but lap their tails when the white man and money are involved. Acquaintances of mine had to fork out thousands of dollars recently for not complying withe the mask wearing law. If the tourists are allowed to break the law, can my acquaintances get their much monies back?

  19. Who are TOURISTS? If a National comes into Antigua with a foreign passport.Is that person a Tourist? I need to know.Because not all Tourists are white people.

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