Venezuelan migrants rush to Tobago as deadline approaches

With one week to go be­fore the dead­line for reg­is­tra­tion, over 200 Venezue­lans braved the in­clement weath­er in To­ba­go yes­ter­day and turned up at the Car­o­line Build­ing Reg­is­tra­tion Cen­tre in Scar­bor­ough, To­ba­go, in an at­tempt to get away from the long lines at the two lo­ca­tions in Trinidad.

This is the first time To­ba­go has seen such an in­flux, since the reg­is­tra­tion process com­menced nine days ago.Since the start of the reg­is­tra­tion process, To­ba­go has not seen any fig­ures ex­ceed­ing 40 mi­grants on a dai­ly ba­sis.

Many of them ad­mit­ted that they had sev­er­al failed at­tempts in be­ing reg­is­tered due to the long lines in Trinidad.The group, which in­clud­ed chil­dren, ar­rived in To­ba­go on the Cabo Star, as well as sev­er­al flights on Caribbean Air­lines.

Guardian Me­dia un­der­stands that sev­er­al of the Venezue­lans were un­able to com­plete the process, af­ter they were turned away by Im­mi­gra­tion per­son­nel, be­cause they were un­able to pro­vide copies of their orig­i­nal doc­u­ments. All busi­ness­es of­fer­ing such ser­vices in Scar­bor­ough were closed on a Sun­day.

Many of the mi­grants say they plan to spend the night in To­ba­go, but will re­turn to Trinidad when their process has been com­plet­ed.

At the close of the day on Sat­ur­day, on­ly 221 had reg­is­tered in To­ba­go while 97 were al­lowed in Sun­day at the close of the busi­ness day.

 - Casan­draTh­omp­son-Forbes

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