Gov’t reopens borders to all Jamaicans overseas

The Jamaican of Government on Wednesday reopened its borders to all its nationals.

The move comes as the country amended sections of its Disaster Risk Management legislation which now allows for all nationals to return under strict guidelines.

Opposition Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Lisa Hanna, shared the amended act on her Facebook page Thursday morning.

“During the period from April 22, 2020, to May 31, 2020, no person shall be permitted to enter Jamaica,” reads section 3 (1) of the Disaster Risk Management Act.

“Sub-paragraph (1) shall not apply to: a) citizens of Jamaica; or b) any person, or category of persons, authorized in writing, in the form set out in Form 1 of the First Schedule, by the Minister responsible for immigration subject to the prior approval of the cabinet.

Under the latest amendment, all nationals upon entry will be tested for SARS-CoV-2 (coronavirus COVID-19) and will remain in a government-run quarantine facility for a period of 14 days.

Prior to the latest amendment, the act allowed for Jamaicans to enter the country on a case-by-case basis subject to the approval by the cabinet.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness had previously, indicated that Jamaicans who are stranded overseas could be allowed to return home but under strict conditions.

Jamaica closed its borders on March 25 as it sought to contain the spread of the deadly coronavirus.