UNC MP questions exemptions for CPL but not citizens trapped abroad
Outgoing Naparima MP Rodney Charles is calling on Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley to explain why systems are being put in place for Trinidad and Tobago to host the 2020 Caribbean Premier League while simultaneously refusing to allow nationals entry into the country for the August 10 general elections.
Charles issued a press release one day after it was officially announced that T&T would host CPL 2020.
He says special quarantine arrangements could be implemented for returning nationals as he notes that US$1.1 billion will be withdrawn from the Heritage and Stabilisation Fund (HSF) for ‘rescue work’. Charles also mentions that the Government has borrowed money from multiple lending agencies.
“The Minister of Sport indicated that over 250 persons would be entering TT for this event and arrangements would be made to ensure that they are quarantined before the games begin. Yet the Government has dragged its feet to allow our citizens to return home in time to safely exercise their constitutional right to vote.”
“They should have put measures in place to facilitate our citizens before calling the election since they would have known weeks in advance that they intended to do so.”
The Opposition member is urging the Government to disclose how many nationals are still out of the country. Furthermore, he laments that many are desperate to return home.
“Our citizens are suffering, many of them are running out of funds and there is also a mental toll caused by being away from their families for such a prolonged period. Citizens have offered to pay their own airfare and quarantine fees but received no directives from the Government.”
Charles adds that while the UNC does not reject plans to host the CPL games, citizens' plight should not be ignored.
“We are not opposed to hosting the CPL, however, similar provisions should be made to assist our nationals. PM Rowley, your only job is to satisfy the needs of citizens of TT first and foremost. Nothing else matters.”