MoH demands Newsday retraction, Deyalsingh denies prior knowledge of ministers at ‘bigshot wedding’

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“[…] In light of the above, the Ministry of Health is calling on the Trinidad and Tobago Newsday Newspaper to immediately retract the statements attributed to the minister…”

The following is a press statement from the Ministry of Health, in response to the Newsday Editorial on 27 November 2020:

Photo: Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh addresses journalists during a virtual media conference on 7 May 2020.
(Copyright Ghansham Mohammed/GhanShyam Photography/Wired868)

The Ministry of Health wishes to draw your attention to an Editorial captioned ‘Bigshot Wedding’ published on page 12 of today’s print and electronic editions of the Trinidad and Tobago Newsday Newspaper.

The Editorial names and attributes a series of statements to the Honourable Minister of Health, Terrence Deyalsingh, who has denied making any such statements.

The minister’s position is supported by a Wednesday 25th November 2020 article in the Trinidad Express (page 3) by Ria Taitt who (was one of several reporters that) interviewed the minister at the sod turning ceremony for the for the new Ministry of Health Head Office in PoS.

The article clearly accounts the conversation that transpired between the Minister and the reporters present. The article reads as follows:

“When asked if government ministers were present at the Valsayn wedding last weekend, Deyalsingh said he read that in the newspapers but he did not know if any ministers were present.”

Image: The novel coronavirus.

Making reference to a conversation he had with the host of the wedding, the minister is further quoted as saying: “I advised that person not to do what he did (ie, hold a large wedding). Because he came to me for advice. I know the person and I advised him not to do it.”

In light of the above, the Ministry of Health is calling on the Trinidad and Tobago Newsday Newspaper to immediately retract the statements attributed to the minister.

The ministry remains committed to providing timely and accurate information on all issues relating to health and wellness and sincerely trusts that this error will be speedily rectified.

Editor’s Note: The Newsday EIC said the paper will do a clarification in the next edition. The paper’s view is that it was unclear whether the minister was referring to the host of the event or a prospective guest of the wedding.

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