It took a global pandemic but after working to get the system up and running, Bermuda’s parliament “will meet for the first time in history in a virtual meeting” on Friday.

The announcement was made by Premier David Burt, during the latest briefing on the spread of COVID-19 in Bermuda on Thursday.

The first ever virtual meeting will streamed live via WebEx, an internet based video conferencing app.

“This will enable the people’s business to be conducted while still maintaining adhering to Shelter in Place, and social distancing guidelines,” said Mr Burt.

“I would like to thank the Speaker of the House, his staff at the Legislature, and also the team at the Department of Information and Digital Technologies for working to get this ready for tomorrow, so that we will be able to remain safe while conducting the people’s business.”

The meeting “is necessary, as the approval of Parliament is required to extend our state of emergency”, he added.

“What is important to note, is that though we predict that the Shelter in Place will end on May 2, there will be a need to continue some form of restrictions for the foreseeable future.”

When the proceedings get underway at 10am, the Premier will move the following Motion:
WHEREAS the World Health Organization has declared COVID-19 to be a global pandemic; AND WHEREAS COVID-19 continues to be an unprecedented and severe threat to public health in Bermuda; AND WHEREAS, in accordance with section 14(6) of the Constitution and section 18(2) of the Emergency Powers (Covid-19 Shelter in Place) Regulations 2020, (“the Regulations”), the House of Assembly and Senate resolved on 6 April 2020 to extend the proclamation of emergency and the duration of the Regulations until 6am on 18 April 2020, and communicated that fact by message to the Governor; BE IT RESOLVED that, pursuant to section 14 (6) of the Constitution, that this Honourable House approves the continuance of the state of emergency until 6 am on 30 June 2020.; and the continuance of the Regulations until 6am on 2 May 2020, pursuant to section 18(2) of the Emergency Powers (COVID -19 Shelter in Place) Regulations 2020.