Members of the public wait in line outside the NIB office in Chaguanas yesterday.

Customers who visited the Chaguanas and Wrightson Road National Insurance Board offices yesterday may have been unable to complete their transactions.

Those in line, some from as early as 5 am, were still waiting to be attended to when Guardian Media visited the branches at midday.

Euryl Housing visited the NIB office in Chaguanas to submit a claim but just before midday day she gave up waiting and went home.

“It’s a poor situation…me ain’t get through so I going home,” she said.

Housing said she took a day off to make the submission and now she is afraid when she gets off again her claim would be invalid.

Also waiting in line was Steve Deonarine who said he usually goes to the office in Couva but was in the area and decided to get his transaction done at the Chaguanas office. But after waiting for approximately five hours he too left. He said no one came out to communicate with those standing in line about what caused the wait.

“The time out that the office attending to the customer there is like seeing a person for 45 minutes plus,” Deonarine said.

“People are getting frustrated and sick. Nothing going down and they not telling you what going down,” he continued.

Deonarine told Guardian Media that no one came out to ensure they socially distanced in the line. He said there is nowhere for people to sit while waiting outside or nowhere to shelter from the rain.

“Is (sic) a disaster,” he said.

“They using the sickness to cover up everything and people suffering out here,” he continued.

Winston Garcia has been back and forth at Chaguanas Office since last week. He said he has been trying to submit his NIS form, but his attempts were unsuccessful.

“This ain’t nice at all because is a set of old people here…a lady fall down here last week in front of me, well they hustle and put she inside like you have to fall down here to go inside,” he said.

Garcia was leaving when he made the comment, saying he could not wait any longer.

In a statement to the media, the NIB said to reduce the wait and make it easier for customers to do business during the pandemic, it implemented an appointment system for customers processing claims. The NIB said this will reduce the number of people visiting its offices.

But some people in the line said it would be difficult for them to use this new online system, they said they were told about it and given a piece of paper with the information but that was all.

“Come out and explain to the people and them, have a lil two mins talk with them,” he said.

“Please make an appointment, dot com this that and all kind of thing,” Deonarine read.