KEEP AWAY! Foreign Affairs Minister urges Diaspora to not travel to Jamaica

Foreign Affairs Minister Kamina Johnson Smith.

Foreign Affairs Minister Kamina Johnson-Smith is appealing to persons in the diaspora to strongly reconsider travel to Jamaica at this time.

The minister made the appeal Thursday (MArch 12) during a press conference in which she noted that choosing not to travel at this time would help the general effort towards preventing the spread of the coronavirus.

“We know that you may have strong emotional drivers and reasons for travelling or for having made plans at this time; we know that those of you that had planned to come for Champs are hugely disappointed. But we are asking for your own personal safety, for your own risk reduction,” Johnson Smith said.

The minister also used the opportunity to provide an update on the Jamaican nationals currently in China. She said there are currently over 500 Jamaicans across China; with 28 in the epicentre of the coronavirus—Wuhan. Johnson-Smith noted that the government has sent supplies and cash to Jamaicans in China.

She said her ministry is aware that 17 Jamaicans returned from China, all of whom have reportedly complied with protocols as outlined by the Ministry of Health and Wellness.