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The Crown Point stretch.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley yesterday questioned the so-called “stakeholders” spreading speculation about a looming shutdown in Tobago.

Yesterday there was chatter among the tourism and business sector in Tobago that there would be a slowdown of the reopening of the country in light of the climbing COVID-19 numbers.

This, the Prime Minister strongly refuted.

“Stakeholders? Who are they?” he asked yesterday.

“When they want to spread lies and fake news they call themselves “stakeholders”,” he said.

Rowley said that the Government has been “most open and transparent” in its COVID management.

“And if there is any adjustment to be made then the Government sources will advise the public promptly,” he said.

The Prime Minister said that that was what “the people of T&T have been and continue to be accustomed to”.

Rowley questioned whether those spreading the rumours were the same ones demanding a speedier reopening to all beaches, bars and restaurants.

Meanwhile, Tourism Minister Randall Mitchell was also not sure who started the speculation.

“As Minister, what is of paramount concern right now is the health and safety of our citizens and their protection from COVID-19 through vaccination,” Mitchell said.

“That is most imperative at this stage,” he said.

Among the chatter, Guardian Media also received information that capacity on the inter-island airbridge was reduced following the discovery of the variant in Tobago.

Senior Corporate Communications Manager at Caribbean Airline Dionne Ligoure advised that “due to the state of emergency capacity on the air bridge can only be adjusted based on instruction from the Ministerial level.”

Guardian Media also contacted the Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan to find out if adjustments will be made on the interisland sea bridge.

He said, “all enquiries related to COVID-19 Health restrictions should be directed to Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh.”

However, after contacting the Health Minister, his Senior Administrative Officer advised that “all enquiries related to inter island travel should be directed to Minister Sinanan.