The decision was taken by Jamaica’s government to make the COVID-19 protocols strictly obeyed. PM of Jamaica Andrew Holness also supported this decision and also said that if the diaspora wants to see some leniency in the measures, it should encourage the Jamaicans sitting at homes to get vaccinated and get safe from the COVID-19 vaccine. These statements were made by PM Holness while addressing the Jamaica Diaspora Sustainability Symposium virtually and members of the diaspora.
PM Holness also highlighted that often the citizens of Jamaica compare their government’s response towards COVID-19 with another country. They sometimes compare with the US government, and he also noted that there is a wast difference between both the countries. PM Holness also said that it has been necessary to what has been the vaccination rate of the country.
PM Holness said that people in Jamaica looking on at their family in the diaspora being able to go to restaurants and to go parties have been looking at their government and questioning that why have they being so strict? why they have been targeting dancehall?” But they have forgotten one critical distraction, which has been our vaccination rate that has been just under 8% of persons who have had the first dose of the vaccine. In the United States and other countries, their vaccination rate had approached 50%, and therefore, the risk to their population had far less than their population.
Holness said that the diaspora could be very helpful to them in their direct communication with their family members to encourage Jamaicans who have hesitated to take the vaccine. The only way would when they had any confidence for full reopening without a reoccurrence of a spike has if that reopening has coupled with vaccination.
Prime Minister Holness, however, revealed that being under an islandwide curfew and other restrictions for over a year had taken a toll on Jamaicans, physically and financially, mentally.
PM Holness said that he would soon announce an adjustment to the island’s protocols to give Jamaicans a bit more freedom.