Fetes and parties not allowed, only concert-type shows
(Trinidad and Tobago ( Loops News) – Carnival activities for 2022 will be held at safe zone venues for vaccinated persons only.
A release from Randall Mitchell, Minister of Tourism, Culture and the Arts, said these safe-zone type events will be limited to 50 per cent capacity, with controlled entry and exit points and sanitisation upon entry in accordance with the Public health regulations.
Concert-type shows such as soca and calypso concerts, calypso tents, soca, calypso, extempo and chutney competitions, steelband concerts, Carnival King and Queen shows, and Carnival theatre will be allowed.
The Minister said following Public Health guidance and regulations, fetes, parties, and similar type events by any other name will not be allowed on account of the nature of those activities and the risk they pose to the increased spread of the Covid 19 virus.
While PCR testing of patrons was considered as a form of risk mitigation, it was not deemed realistic as the cost per test per patron would be uneconomical.
All performance spaces will be made available for bookings events at very affordable rates.
The Minister’s release comes on the heels of a Carnival Working Group meeting held on Wednesday to determine the specific events that will be held and a calendar of events is being developed that would not run afoul of the current Public Health Regulations.
The release said another focus of the meeting was to gauge the level of financial assistance that the NCC and other stakeholders would require to support the planned events since the usual level of appropriation was not made in the Appropriation Act 2022.
“This move represents a first step in restarting the events sector. Given the economic importance of Carnival, we felt it was necessary to consider what was possible, and what events can be had safely. We look forward to the development of a calendar of events and its subsequent marketing so that we can all have a safe taste of the Carnival that is truly a part of all of us,” Mitchell said.
“While we remain committed to safely restarting the events and entertainment sector, we must consider the global scenario which is that Trinidad and Tobago like the rest of the world are in the midst of a global pandemic which continues to evolve with new variants being detected causing health organisations worldwide to quickly adapt and change strategies.”
The Ministry’s release was sent shortly after a press conference held by the Trinidad and Tobago Promoter’s Association.
At the meeting, TTPA President Jerome Precilla said that Government’s present plan for vaccinated seated events poses several issues, firstly, that such events are being hosted via government-funded entities and secondly that such events would not bring as much foreign exchange as standing events.
He asked what was in place for Carnival 2023.