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COVID-19 Task Force approves return of 104 Guyanese; opening of Courts stores to collect hire-purchase payments

Last Updated on Monday, 18 May 2020, 20:29 by Denis Chabrol

The National COVID-19 Task Force Monday night announced that approval has been given for 104 Guyanese to return home, but they will have to provide coronavirus test results 48 hours in advance or they may be quarantined if they fail to do so.

The Task Force said the decision for “controlled re-entry” was taken at its weekly statutory meeting and that all of the persons would have to pay their own airfares.

“The meeting considered the applications of various groups of Guyanese overseas who are desirous of returning home. In this regard some of these requests were approved as part of controlled re-entry measures.  The approvals are subject to the satisfaction of all requirements of the Ministry of Public Health and other relevant ministries and agencies, and the cost of return being covered by the applicants,” the NCTF said.

Those given the green-light to return are 19 Guyanese students of the Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad, 70 Guyanese cruise ship workers attached to Royal Caribbean, our Guyanese in St Vincent to return home via SVG Air, and 10 Guyanese in St Maarten.

Also granted approval to return are the wife of late Guyanese trade unionist, Komal Chand and his body from Cuba.

The Guyana government also approved an application from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) for a team of officials based in Guyana to travel to Suriname to observe the Surinamese election scheduled for May 25th and return to Guyana.

The Task Force said it rejected an application from Caribbean Princess cruise-line for 63 Guyanese crew members to return via sea “given risks involved with seaport entry.”  The NCTF, however, said it was willing to consider an application for these crew members to return by air.

The NCTF also approved an application from Unicomer Guyana to open eight of their Courts stores during non-curfew hours “for the purposes of receiving monthly installment payments only from customers” from Wednesday, May 20, 2020 “subject to fulfillment of all requirements.” The locations are Main Street, Georgetown, Bartica; Richmond, Essequibo Coast; Linden; Mahaica; Parika; New Amsterdam and Diamond.

No mention was made about the Carter Centre observers. Government has already turned down that request and has asked the United States (US) government to respect its decision.