Prime Minister Andrew Holness said the disembarkation process for Jamaican workers on the ‘Adventure of the Seas’ cruise line ship operated by Royal Caribbean Limited (RCCL) was completed on May 25 at the Falmouth Pier in Trelawny.
The final batch of Jamaicans left the vessel in the morning, Holness said outlining that the management of RCCL reported that 1024 of the 1,044 Jamaicans aboard who wished to be landed in Jamaica have now done so.
“Jamaicans will recall that as early as April, the Government wrote to RCCL to explore ways to bring our Jamaicans home. The ‘Adventure of the Seas’ was given permission to dock on (May 19) following the finalisation of a protocol under the Controlled Re-Entry Programme,” Holness said.
The prime minister said the Ministry of Health and Wellness created a sterile zone around the port to conduct COVID-19 testing, following which the ship workers were transferred to the Bahia Principe hotel in St Ann to await test results.
“At present nine Jamaicans from the ‘Adventure of the Seas’ have been placed in isolation, having tested positive for COVID19, while 384 persons have been sent to do home quarantine following their negative test result.
Persons who are allowed to quarantine at home have consented to have their locations geo-fenced, using smart technology through the JamCovid19 app and to do a video check multiple times per day while in quarantine. "This is administered by the Jamaica Constabulary Force,” Holness said.
In the meantime, the Jamaican Government is preparing to welcome more Jamaicans from additional vessels scheduled to dock at the Falmouth Pier this week.
Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) will dock in Falmouth this evening to land 174 Jamaican crew members, while the Carnival Cruise line will also return home an additional 240 Jamaican crew members tomorrow morning.
A Disney vessel is tentatively slated to berth on May 29 to disembark another batch of more than 400 crew members. The protocols and procedures now established by the Government will be used to land the incoming ship workers.
As we have done before with other overseas nationals aboard ships that have docked in Jamaica, 180 Columbian nationals will be transported via a secure corridor to a waiting charter flight at Sangster International Airport to be flown back to Columbia.
So far, the Government has been able to repatriate some 2,000 Jamaicans who have applied for re-entry through the JamCOVID app.
“I wish to place on record my appreciation and gratitude to the Jamaican frontline workers including nurses, doctors, members of the security forces, the Passport and Immigration Agency, (PICA), JUTC drivers and other critical personnel who have worked tirelessly to ensure a smooth repatriation process.
"I want to reassure Jamaicans that your government is continuing to manage this process of Controlled Re-entry in a manner that keeps all Jamaicans safe,” Holness said.