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A delegation of Antiguan students studying in Cuba are being forced to source their own funds in order to return home.

The students say they will use whatever money they have left – and are pleading for donations from the public to make up the shortfall.

It will cost the students US$42,000 to be repatriated on a plane from Havana to Antigua.

Sources tell the Observer that there are enough students, including a handful from St Kitts, to fill a charter plane.

While students who are in their final year have opted to remain in Cuba, the remaining scholarship students say they are no longer in class because the semester has been postponed.

They want to leave Cuba until the new semester begins in September and say they would prefer to be home with their families in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, their families, like many people, are cash-strapped because of the outbreak and unable to meet the cost of the entire trip back home.

While several people have pledged money, none has yet been forthcoming.

The students say their appeals to the Antigua and Barbuda government for help have also been unsuccessful.

Government’s own resources have taken a hit due to the virus outbreak.

Anyone wishing to help can make a donation through the wife of Dr Philmore Benjamin who is in charge of collecting funds for the flight.

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