National Security Minister Stuart Young said nationals who wish to leave the country are being given exemptions to do so. His ministry has set up a dedicated email address to accept applications from people who want to leave TT.
Young said these include students who wish to go abroad to study and the farm workers who wish to go to Canada. The email address is email@example.com. Young said it was set up so applications to leave are not mixed up with those applying for exemptions to return to TT.
He said the next cadre of people to return were 29 nationals from Cuba and 17 from St Maarten on Monday via a Caribbean Airlines flight. He said the next set of returnees will be students from Grenada, as well as nationals in the UK and Canada. He said his ministry has received between 2,500 and 3,000 applications for exemption to return, and there are more which have not yet been entered in the system.
Young said no approval has been given for commercial flights to return to TT. He said some flights which will be taking nationals out of Trinidad may be used to bring back nationals, especially from Canada.
He warned that every single person coming into TT has to receive an exemption before attempting to return and people should not be fooled by claims that certain charter airlines have received blanket exemption. He said no specific company has received the approval of his ministry to enter TT and he intends to investigate whether nationals may have been scammed of their money after receiving such promises.
He said while students in India will be receiving exemptions to return, the footballers there will not be receiving an exemption as they fall into a different category. He said there are specific criteria being used to grant exemptions, as well as the need to balance the numbers which can be housed in quarantine.