Security minister says Gov’t is taking the fight to COVID-19

Security Minister Dr Horace Chang.

Minister of National Security, Dr Horace Chang, is assuring members of the public that the Passport Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) is working to prevent more cases of COVID-19 from entering the island’s main ports of entry.

A meeting was held last Friday (March 13) with Immigration Officers at the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, to discuss personal safety and address concerns amid the implementation of travel restrictions outlined by the Government.

Chang said that there was a huge emphasis on the importance of heightened vigilance in the screening of passengers travelling from high-risk countries to Jamaica, “which are a part of the existing travel ban”.

“Immigration Officers are doing their best to detect and slow the spread of the virus at the main ports of entry,” Chang noted. “I am imploring Immigration Officers to pay keen attention to travellers who appear to show signs of COVID-19.”

He urged Immigration Officers to “ensure personal safety and adhere to the protocols established by the Ministry of Health and Wellness”. Chang noted that glass barriers are being installed at immigration desks and Immigration Officers are being provided with latex gloves and hand-sanitisers as well as masks for the proper execution of their duties.

Meanwhile, to reduce in-house traffic, the PICA is encouraging the public to use online and dropbox services or to simply visit its website at www.pica.gov.jm for passport renewal.

By Camille Miller