Government intervenes in Reggae Boyz visa issue

Sports Minister Olivia 'Babsy' Grange

 By Kayon Raynor


The Jamaican Government was up to late Monday night working overtime to avert the deportation of two members of the senior men's national football team – The Reggae Boyz-  who traveled to Costa Rica on Sunday ahead of Wednesday's third CONCACAF World Cup qualifier in that Central American country.

Sports Minister Olivia "Babsy" Grange updated Radio Jamaica Sports on the matter concerning veteran defender Kemar "Taxi" Lawrence and Striker Norman Campbell shortly after 10:00 pm., saying the government was “working through diplomatic channels”.

Those diplomatic channels include Jamaica’s ambassador in Mexico City and the Costa Rican Ambassador in Kingston, who the Minister explained, “have been communicating and working together to have the two players, who unfortunately were found to not meet immigration requirements, on arrival in San Jose (Costa Rica)… for them to receive special dispensation to be allowed entry.”

When contacted after 9:00pm Monday, Dalton Wint, General Secretary of the Jamaica Football Federation, declined to provide details on the matter, only confirming that the two players concerned were still at the airport at that time.

The rest of the Jamaican team, having lost their first two matches of the World Cup qualifying campaign to Mexico and Panama, arrived in Costa Rica via chartered flight Monday afternoon.


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