Local businesswoman Sascha Singh, who is a director of private jet charter company, Blissfull Jets in Miami, is defending her company following the launch of an investigation by the Ministry of National Security to ensure that companies like hers aren’t “tricking” desperate nationals with false promises of exemptions.
In a Zoom interview with Guardian Media yesterday, the 35-year-old businesswoman said although Minister of National Security Stuart Young was careful not to name anyone in his remarks during a Ministry of Health virtual press conference on Monday, it was obvious that it was directed at her.
“He did not use my name but everyone knows it’s me because I’m the only one who came out with a private jet ad within the last couple of weeks,” she said while assuring that her company does not promise customers exemptions.
“We cannot get you any exempt. We cannot take your money for an exempt. I even told a customer who asked why don’t we pay for the exempt—I said that was illegal. We cannot do that.”
She said three other companies are offering the chartered flights to T&T and her company follows the same protocol as those. She added that nationals chartering flights are required to apply for their exemptions.
“You have to apply for your exemption individually and what we as a company do, we ask them to forward that to us so that we could do our group application for the jet…as per stated by the Ministry of National Security. If it’s a group of persons and it’s a private jet company- the company applies showing full payment and then they proceed with the application,” she described.
She explained that if the passengers aren’t given the exemption by the ministry, they are refunded their money.
Singh said she welcomed the ministry’s investigation but insisted that Minister Young should have let it run its course before making any premature remarks in public. She argued that she is being singled out by the Minister of National Security over an angry email she sent him pleading for the nationals to be allowed back into the country.
Addressing the matter during the Ministry of Health’s press conference yesterday, Minister Young said: “I am going to be asking the authorities to investigate whether persons were fooled or tricked into paying their money on the basis that, by the payment of that money they would get approval to enter Trinidad and Tobago.”
He assured that “there is no charter company in the world that has the authority to bring people in with the individuals getting approval.”
“I can say without fear of contradiction that this is completely false and misleading.”