2644825
Prime Minister and Member of Parliament for Diego Martin West, Dr Keith Rowley, MP, answers questions in the House of Representatives yesterday.

SHALIZA HASSANALI

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley has given the assurance that his Government will do everything possible to protect T&T’s citizens from the deadly Coronavirus.

The Coronavirus was one of the issues that came up in the Prime Minister’s questions yesterday in the House of Representatives.

In China, the BBC reported yesterday that than 82 people have died and more than 2,700 cases have been confirmed in mainland China as the virus continues to spread throughout Asia and the rest of the world.

Opposition member Lackram Bodoe enquired from Rowley about the rapid spread of the Coronavirus worldwide and whether the Government has considered the implementation of travel restrictions to T&T.

Rowley said given the fast situation developing in Asia and across the world, the Government “is very alert and the Ministry of Health is considering and preparing a note for the Cabinet on this matter and the appropriate decision will be taken and at the appropriate time and immediately the population will be informed.”

In a follow-up question, Bodoe enquired if there were any confirmed cases of Coronavirus in the country, to which Rowley replied “as far as the Government is aware we are not in a position to confirm any such but the Minister of Health has pointed out that the nature of the virus is such….that if you are not presenting with a temperature to be identified…if you are asymptomatic… mean you do not show the symptoms that is not a proof that you are not carrying the virus.”

Rowley said the Government was “in no position to confirm that we have. And I think that is a good position to be in at this time.”

Bodoe asked Rowley if he can give the assurance that adequate resources will be provided for the containment of the virus and its treatment for citizens if we are severely affected.

The PM said Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh has been constantly addressing the population on this matter.

He said the ministry has been following the World Health Organisation protocols one of which involved the screening of foreigners at the Piarco Airport “to be ahead of the game. So we are proactive and we will be extremely concerned and careful to do everything that is possible to protect the people of T&T.”