A blind, diabetic T&T citizen stuck in St Lucia is appealing to the government for assistance to either be brought home or to help sustain him until this country’s borders are reopened.
According to the chief executive officer (CEO) of the Trinidad and Tobago Blind Welfare Association (TTBWA) Kenneth Suratt, Siparia resident Prakash Jaglalsingh, 52 went to St Lucia on the invitation of a visually impaired friend on March 8.
Guardian Media tried for an interview with Jaglalsingh directly yesterday but Suratt said he did not have an internet connection on his phone to receive WhatsApp calls as he had left the place he was staying and was trying to find the T&T Embassy in St Lucia.
Suratt said Jagalalsingh’s airfare was paid for by the friend in St Lucia so he could attend a religious thanksgiving service as Jaglalsingh is not employed and depends on the state’s disability grant.
He said Jaglalsingh was supposed to return home on Sunday 22 March on a 3 pm Caribbean Airlines flight. But when Jaglalsingh got to the airport, he was told the flight was cancelled.
Now stuck in St Lucia, Jaglalsingh has only several hundred dollars to sustain himself and the medication he needs to manage his diabetes is running dangerously low.
“He was not expecting to remain in St Lucia past Sunday, he does have the money to upkeep himself and his medication is almost finished, the TTBWA is appealing to the Government to either bring him home or at least, make some kind of government to government arrangement so he can get some assistance until he can come home,” Suratt said.
He said he understands that National Security Minister Stuart Young has said there will be no exceptions to the borders being closed but he appealed for sympathy for Jaglalsingh, saying being completely blind and stranded is very distressing.
“Being someone totally blind, it is different, you can never feel confident about what might happen when you are in a strange place and you don’t want to overstay your welcome as well. He does have a lot of anxiety about what is going to happen to him.”