JAMAICANS stranded overseas and experiencing severe hardship amid the COVID-19 pandemic will be given priority in the Government’s controlled re-entry arrangement, Foreign Affairs Minister Senator Kamina Johnson Smith has said.
Speaking at last evening’s digital press conference at Jamaica House in St Andrew, the minister acknowledged that while the Government continues to push against the spread of the virus locally, which triggered the closure of the country’s air and sea ports on March 24, the borders cannot remain closed to Jamaicans indefinitely.
She also said the re-entry of citizens is subject to the capacity of both the public health care system and quarantine facilities and that the process will first take into consideration “Jamaicans who are most vulnerable and are facing the most hardship”.
Her announcement follows some uncertainty in the public domain last week concerning the regulations of the Disaster Risk Management Act (DRMA) after news surfaced of an ease in travel restrictions on incoming passenger traffic to the island.
Several social media users, including Opposition spokeswoman on foreign affairs Lisa Hanna and dancehall artiste Spice, had posted that the country’s borders had been opened to Jamaicans until May 31.