A Tobago sports administrator has described as unfortunate, the decision by the Ministry of Health to reinstate its ban on recreational contact sports in light the spike in covid19 cases.
On Thursday, Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh announced TT had recorded three additional covid19 deaths and 46 new cases over a period of 24 hours.
The announcement came on the eve of the long Easter weekend in which thousands of Trinidadians were expected to journey to Tobago for fun and relaxation.
Deyalsingh said the action was necessary as it appeared citizens had become complacent and there was a feeling that the pandemic was over.
He said, however, the measure would not affect training for national teams preparing for regional and international tournaments.
The Prime Minister has already warned that an upsurge in covid19 cases could trigger another national lockdown.
But Dr Rowley said if this were to occur, the Government would not be in a position to render financial assistance to businesses and citizens who may become unemployed as a result of the measure.
Speaking to Newsday on Friday, president of the Tobago Netball League Ruthlyn Antoine said she had expected the ban would be reinstated.
“I was fearing this from the time I heard the press conferences earlier in the week where they were talking about sporting people and liming after the games. So, I was fearing the worst,” she said.
“It is unfortunate but I understand. I also hope it is not for a long period of time and that the numbers (covid19 cases) go back down and we get back to normalcy. I understand the position.”
However, Antoine said some members of the Tobago sporting fraternity are claiming victimisation.
She said they could not understand how the Government could urge people to visit Tobago and in the same vein, cut back on their recreational activity.
“The fraternity has indicated that they feel discriminated against because you are asking people to come Tobago and rolling back on sports.
“Some people are saying they are putting the economy in front of sports and they are, as usual, not giving sports the high priority. This is the feedback I am getting.”
Antoine said she does not support this view.
She noted the Deyalsingh did not announce any roll back on training for the national netball team.
“I know he has not said anything about the national team so I expect our netballers who were in training for the national team, they will continue to practice.”
Antoine said although there were no specific tournaments planned for the weekend, netball groups on the island recently resumed training at Shaw Park.
She said those groups will be affected.
“I know persons will be greatly affected and disappointed but I am just asking our netballers to observe the protocols so that we could get back on the court.”