DECLARING THAT Jamaica is by no means satisfied with how the free movement of nationals across the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) region is being facilitated, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade AJ Nicholson has announced that the Government is gearing up to take the matter to the highest level of the CARICOM secretariat for discussions.
Nicholson, who was addressing the Rotary Club of St Andrew meeting on Tuesday. pointed to the Shanique Myrie incident as one clear example that all was not well in CARICOM as far as the free movement of nationals was concerned.
He told the gathering at the Hotel Four Seasons that Jamaica and other Caribbean nations were awaiting the ruling on the Shanique Myrie case before "taking up the issue".
"Sadly, we in Jamaica, certainly the Government, are by no means satisfied by the processes. Even if the protocols or the agreement itself is good, we are not satisfied with the processes that have been adopted to deal with the free movement of skilled nationals throughout the Caribbean.
"I can tell you that, as foreign minister, I intend to place that issue on the table," Nicholson said.
Sticking to the Shanique Myrie issue, Nicholson said it was "a real pity" that it had to reach the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) for settlement, arguing that countries should be mature enough to accommodate each other.
Jamaican Shanique Myrie has taken the Barbadian government to court for inhumane treatment she claimed was meted out to her by immigration officers when she arrived in Barbados on March 14, 2011. The CCJ is to make a ruling on the matter where Myrie is seeking a payout of US$500, 000 in punitive damages from the Barbadian government.