Mayor: no mas, no pan, no J’Ouvert for Point Fortin Borough Day

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Saleema Thomas –

MAJOR events commemorating Point Fortin Borough 42nd anniversary celebrations, have been cancelled.

In an update on the anniversary commemoration on her Facebook page, Point Fortin Mayor Saleema Thomas confirmed that activities including the J’Ouvert and Pan Extravaganza have been called off.

This comes two days after Thomas launched the celebration on Friday night and she said she was overwhelmed after two years of being denied the opportunity to celebrate the anniversary of Point Fortin receiving borough status, owing to the covid19 pandemic.

Earlier reports indicated the decision to cancel some events came from the Office of the Prime Minister and was brought on by concerns that the activities might become covid19 super-spreader events. Reports also suggest that concerns were raised about the cost of hosting the borough day celebrations.

Thomas neither confirmed nor denied those reports when Newsday contacted her on Sunday evening about the cancellation of the festival. She said then, that she was in the middle of something and was not able to speak. She asked to be contacted for more information on Monday instead.

However shortly after 9 pm on Sunday, Thomas released the following statement on the mayor’s Facebook page.

“The Borough of Point Fortin is at this time in the midst of commemorating its 42nd anniversary, with a calendar of events including sporting, educational and cultural activities.

“With dedication to ensure safety, whilst the country transitions from pandemic to endemic stages in covid 19, the council reviewed scheduled borough activities along with authorities, and took careful note of the uptick in cases and the reopening of schools this week, and factored the risks to society as a whole.

“Based on this review, it has been decided to scale back the schedule of events. This will particularly apply to the events that include large gatherings which can pose a risk to public health.

“As a result, the following corporation-led events are removed from the schedule of activities and effectively cancelled. This takes effect from April 25, 2022.”

The cancelled events include, all Community Spotlight, Military Parade, Traditional Mas, Pan Extravaganza and J’Ouvert.”

Thomas said the council, in its continued effort to satisfy the demands of its burgesses, will release a revised calendar of events, and will also be meeting with all major stakeholders.

“We encourage our burgesses in Point Fortin and the wider Trinidad and Tobago, to continue to stay safe and observe all covid19 protocols that remain in place under the current Public Health regulations.”