Stage set for final goodbye
Today marks the last day on which mourners will be able to sign condolence books dedicated to late cultural icon, Professor Rex Nettleford.
One more of these books was added on Friday in the western end of the island - at Cornwall College in St James - to complement the four already opened in the Corporate Area.
The other locations at which persons may sign condolence books are the Institute of Jamaica, the Little Theatre, the Jamaica Conference of Trade Unions and the University of the West Indies.
Books are also available at Jamaican missions and embassies around the world.
Meanwhile, arrangements have been made to accommodate all persons who wish to attend Nettleford's official funeral, which will be held tomorrow at the University Chapel in Mona at 10 a.m.
Chairman of the planning committee for the funeral, Professor Barry Chevannes, told the Jamaica Information Service that persons will either access the campus via the Irvine Hall, main or post office gates.
"The very important persons and very, very important persons will be allowed access to the university through the main gate, which is on the Hermitage Road and then the post office gate will be used for people who are specially invited and who will therefore be able to have access to the general parking lot," he said.
He added that the general public would be allowed to park by the Taylor Hall playing field, with a shuttle to transport them from there to the chapel.
Chevannes said members of the general public who wish to attend the funeral will enter through the Irvine Hall gate on Golding Avenue and will be ushered into one of the two designated parking areas. Members of the general motoring public must enter through the University Hospital and follow the instructions of security personnel.
Only special guests who have tickets and members of the academic faculty will be allowed to enter the chapel.
Chevannes said it was expected that everyone who wishes to attend the funeral will be accommodated, as those who cannot fit inside the chapel will be seated in the Assembly Hall as well as in two tents.
The event will be streamed online on UWI TV (
) and will also be broadcast on the RJR, Television Jamaica and CVM TV.
Because of the anticipated huge turnout and gridlocks, Chevannes said the police would be out in full force to coordinate traffic.
After the funeral, members of the public are invited to a special concert by the National Dance Theatre Company at the Little Theatre at 7 p.m.
Nettleford, who was born on February 3, 1933 in Falmouth, Trelawny, passed away on February 2 at George Washington University Hospital in Washington, DC, in the United States. He was 76.