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Dr Avinash Sawh

Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh says he will be “guided by legal advice” on whether he will file an official complaint with the Medical Board of Trinidad and Tobago regarding the conduct of Dr Avinash Sawh.

Guardian Media contacted Deyalsingh via text on Monday after the Board announced it had retracted its letter to Sawh advising him of complaints made against him by Deyalsingh and five others for racist and derogatory statements Sawh was recorded making by a former employee in early November 2020.

The board said it will revisit Sawh’s case at its monthly meeting in February and based on whether any official complaints are filed, will decide if to launch an enquiry into Sawh’s behaviour.

The questions were: “The medical board, through its attorney Rajiv Persad has indicated it has withdrawn its complaints against Dr Avinash Sawh. The board says those who initially filed complaints against Sawh have not filled out forms to signal an official complaint being lodged. Your name sits at the top of the list of complainants, why was an official complaint not filed by yourself? The Medical Board says it will revisit Sawh’s case in February, do you intend to file an official complaint by then?”

Deyalsingh did not respond to the questions, instead, he sent a text stating he was in a meeting and advised the questions should be sent to the Corporate Communications department of the Ministry of Health.

The questions were sent on Monday and on Tuesday morning, head of the department Candice Alcantara responded, stating, “Please note that the Honourable Terrence Deyalsingh, Minister of Health, will be guided by legal advice, as required, on this matter.”

Guardian Media asked for clarification on whether Deyalsingh will or will not file a complaint but Alcantara said the response remains the same.