GEORGETOWN, Guyana, May 22, 2020 (CMC) – The Guyana government said, today, it would re-migrate approximately 300 nationals, stranded overseas, as a result of the border closures, due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
But the National COVID-19 Task Force (NCTF), which held a special meeting to consider the applications of various groups of Guyanese stranded overseas, said the re-entry would apply to nationals, who have registered with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, via Guyanese Embassies, High Commissions and Honorary Consuls.
“This approval encompasses Guyanese nationals in Trinidad and Tobago, and in New York, New Jersey, Florida and other states in the United States of America, and also in other countries,” the NCTF said in the statement.
It said the approval is strictly subjected to a number of conditions, including being applicable “only to nationals resident in Guyana, who are stranded overseas, and who registered with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as at Thursday, May 21st, 2020; Guyanese nationals in possession of a valid Guyanese passport, as well as those nationals, meeting “all requirements of the Ministry of Public Health and other relevant ministries and agencies being fulfilled”.
In addition, they will also have to produce the results of COVID-19 tests (PCR with results in English language) being provided, at least 48 hours prior to arrival, and that the applicants, or their employers, covering all costs for their return.
The authorities said that all returning nationals will only be permitted to enter by air, and that the sea ports would remain closed.
“The NCTF re-iterates that no person, who tests positive for COVID-19, will be permitted entry into Guyana, and that all arriving passengers must undergo the PCR tests and submit the results, which must be in English, at least 48 hours prior to their arrival in Guyana.”
The NCTF said that persons, who qualify to return to Guyana, under this approval, are asked to make urgent contact with their nearest Guyanese diplomatic mission, and complete the necessary paperwork and submit the relevant documents and information.
“The NCTF reaffirms that Guyana’s airspace remains closed and that the flight applications for each arriving flight, related to this approval of the return of the approximately 300 stranded Guyanese, must be submitted, by the airline or operator, to the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority, for approval.
“The NCTF empathizes with Guyanese, who have been stranded overseas for several weeks, and some of whom have been sheltering in challenging circumstances. The NCTF sincerely thanks Guyanese residents overseas, and other persons, who have provided shelter and accommodation for these persons.”
It said that it anticipates that these persons will return to Guyana, over the course of the next two weeks, and that within the controlled re-entry policy, it is eager to ensure that “every Guyanese, who is stranded overseas, returns home, within the shortest possible time, while ensuring that the health and safety of Guyanese in Guyana are maintained and not compromised, in any way”.