NCTF announcements following virtual meeting

Press Release

Georgetown, Guyana – Friday, April 17, 2020

The National COVID-19 Task Force (NCTF) yesterday held another virtual meeting and a wide range of matters were considered.

  1. The NCTF announces that the Ministry of Education will not re-open schools on Monday, April 20th as was previously planned and that all schools will remain closed until further notice. E-learning will continue.
  2. The NCTF has appointed a sub-committee to advise on social assistance. This sub-committee is chaired by Director General Joseph Harmon and includes Ministers Amna Ally, Catherine Hughes and Haimraj Rajkumar along with NCTF Secretary Imran Khan and is to also include a designated senior official from the Ministry of Finance.
  3. The NCTF received requests for specially approved flights to repatriate foreign nationals who are in Guyana and approved some of these including a request from the Canadian High Commission to repatriate Canadian nationals using WestJet. The advice and guidance of the Ministry of Public Health and the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority are critical in the NCTF decision-making in this regard.
  4. The NCTF has received a formal request from the Guyana Bar Association to classify attorneys-at-law as essential workers who are required to work during the curfew hours of 6pm to 6am. This request is under consideration.

The NCTF continues to receive information of Guyanese citizens who are in various parts of the world seeking to return to Guyana and while sympathetic to their situation, considers it a priority to ensure that all citizens in Guyana are protected from the spread of COVID-19 and reiterates that Guyana’s international airports remain closed to incoming passengers until May 3rd. An assessment is to be done, prior to May 3rd, to determine whether the airports can reopen to passenger traffic or whether it is necessary for the closure to be extended.

The NCTF pleads with citizens to continue and intensify practising social distancing, to adhere to the curfew and stay at home order and all official COVID-19 advisories. The NCTF remains concerned about the increasing numbers of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Guyana, now up to 57 in total, with 6 deaths and 9 recovered cases.