Jamaicans set to arrive from Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados
File photo of a plane
More Jamaicans are scheduled to arrive in Jamaica on flights from Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados today (June 13) as the Jamaican Government works with Caribbean countries and regional airlines to get nationals home.
“We have now scheduled flights to bring Jamaicans home, not just students but all nationals who have been impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions and had flights cancelled on them since we closed our borders,” said Jamaica's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Kamina Johnson Smith.
“We are also working on finalising flights from The Bahamas and Antigua and Barbuda, which will round out our largest population of Jamaicans stranded within the Caribbean. Cayman is being dealt with through Cayman Airways flights, and those have been running quite well,” she added.
Senator Johnson Smith was speaking at a virtual press conference from the Ministry of Health and Wellness’ New Kingston offices.
She noted that during this week, 154 Jamaicans arrived from the United Kingdom (UK) and 84 from Canada.
There have also been arrivals from the United States and the Cayman Islands.
Senator Johnson Smith said that the increased number of flights into the island is “really very good news” for Jamaicans, many of whom were travelling for business, vacation, school, or were on short-stay programmes.
“Some have been in the care of the honorary consuls or our missions overseas, through emergency support provided from headquarters at the Ministry or by reaching out to the diaspora communities in those locations. So, when our urgent cases are able to return to their families, it is one of the best feelings in the world, and we are at a good place now,” she said.
Senator Johnson Smith said that Jamaicans overseas have been abiding by the COVID-19 rules, such as proper hygiene, physical distancing and the wearing of masks.
She urged them, on their return to the island, to adhere to the measures that have been established locally, to protect themselves and their loved ones.
In the meantime, the Minister lauded the team at the airports managing the arrivals and those processing applications through the JamCOVID app.
She reiterated that the application procedure has been simplified and “it is now a one-stage process that takes far less time”.
She reminded persons that there is no need for them to apply to the app multiple times.
“If your application has not been processed and you have answered the questions, click on the frequently asked questions (FAQ) link on the JamCovid immigration site and you will see numbers there and an email address that you can use to have somebody follow up on your problems for you,” she advised.