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Hoyte knocks travel hassles

Hoyte knocks travel hassles

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The hassle of regional travel and its implications for the future of Caricom surfaced again last Friday.

Renowned Caribbean media personality and president of the Nation Publishing Company in Barbados, Harold Hoyte, raised the issue as he began to address local journalists at a workshop held by the Eastern Caribbean Press Council. {{more}}He expressed concern over the strenuous documentation process for Caribbean nationals travelling inter-island, referring to the request for immigrants’ full home address and the purpose of visit to the country.

“It is a pleasure to be able to get pass the Immigration Department at E.T. Joshua Airport. Once you get pass there, you feel quite welcomed. It is amazing, as I was saying to Ricky (Singh) this morning, the problems that we have in travelling from territory to territory in this region and how difficult and complicated it is,” Hoyte stated.

Hoyte said, to him, such is not the spirit of Caribbean integration, and he was worried about the future of the region if that type of documentation was to continue as Caricom people move from parish to parish.

Hoyte compared the documentation process to that of the European Union and Singapore.

“When you go to England with a European Union passport and you flash it, they don’t even want to see your picture. You flash it and you go through because you are a member of the European Union.

And, in Singapore, you don’t go to an immigration officer. You pass in your immigration form and you proceed. When they need you they call you back.”

The regional media icon said because of the tedious process in the regional territories, he sometimes feels unwelcomed.

Hoyte also recalled an encounter with an immigration official who gave him a three-minute lecture in Guyana last week Thursday, when he travelled there for a CEO symposium.