Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Kamina Johnson Smith provided this update today. She also noted that the issue will be on the agenda of the upcoming CARICOM Heads of Government meeting in July. Let us hope that steady progress will be made.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade wishes to advise that the Government of Trinidad and Tobago has responded positively to calls made by Senator the Honorable Kamina Johnson Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade to address the issues related to the treatment of Jamaican nationals entering Trinidad and Tobago.
Minister Johnson Smith is advising that, in a letter, Senator the Honorable Dennis Moses, Minister of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs of Trinidad and Tobago, committed to:
- implement customer service training at Piarco in June 2016, specifically targeting those who interact with passengers who are denied entry, and
- retro-fit, by July 2016, a dedicated facility at Piarco International Airport for the use of persons who are denied entry.
In making the point that discussions are ongoing, the Minister noted: “We welcome these undertakings and hope they will provide tangible results to the Jamaican citizen, whom we always represent. There is, however, more work to be done, and our discussions will continue on more complex aspects of our concerns – again, all in the interests of our citizens.”
She also explained that her counterpart’s response followed on their recent ‘face-to-face’ meeting in New York in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs (UNGASS). The Ministry advised that discussions will continue in earnest and further updates will be provided at the appropriate time.