This deportee was very upset about having been ejected from the UK under circumstances which he described as racism and
A total of 9,425 Jamaicans have been deported from around the world since 2012, including 4,153 from the United States of America (USA), 1,345 from the United Kingdom, and 931 from Canada.
According to deportation statistics requested from the national security ministry by the
Jamaica Observer yesterday, between January and June of this year 342 Jamaicans were sent back from the USA while 149 were deported from the UK. Another 42 Jamaicans were expelled by Britain on Wednesday this week under controversial circumstances.
Between 2012 and June 2016 a total of 2,954 Jamaicans were sent packing from other countries, among them The Bahamas, Trinidad and Tobago, Curacao, Mexico, Germany, Cayman, Colombia, Grenada, Panama, St Lucia, Switzerland, St Maarten, Aruba, and Antigua.
The data demonstrate that the deportations have mainly been as a result of overstaying or illegal entry/re-entry into these countries. This offence accounted for 902 deportations in 2015; 899 in 2014; 791 in 2013; and 894 in 2012. The other reasons are drug-related offences; assault and wounding; theft; murder; firearm offences; sexual offences, and other crimes.
Yesterday National Security Minister Robert Montague sought to downplay the deportation of the Jamaicans who arrived here on Wednesday, pointing out that it was nothing out of the ordinary.
“It should be pointed out that this is not unusual, nor the first time where Jamaican citizens have been deported by the United Kingdom in such large numbers. In 2014, 40 persons were returned to Jamaica on a charter flight, and since then, persons have been returned to the island on a regular basis,” he said in a statement issued to the media.
The Jamaicans, some of whom have reportedly lived all their lives in the UK, were sent back to the island amid accusations of injustice from the deportees and some critics in London. The deportations were enforced in spite of appeals mounted in the UK against the process by those affected.
The national security minister said the return of the Jamaicans in this instance “raises interesting questions on human rights and natural justice”.
A Glasgow-based immigration support group – Unity Centre – has accused the UK Home Office of pushing the Jamaicans out using manipulation tactics. The group also charged that racism played a role in the action taken by the British Government.
“The UK Government’s decision to forcibly remove 50 people to Jamaica on Wednesday morning, deporting them on a private charter plane, was unjust and unfair. Among those targeted were parents, grandparents and partners of people still resident in the UK, some of whom are primary caregivers and one with a mental health condition. All but one had children. Many had been living in the UK for over 10 years, with some arriving in the country as small children, even babies,” a human rights piece in the UK
Guardian newspaper read yesterday.
Montague stressed that Jamaican authorities would “give due consideration to the various expressions, both by the returned citizens and observers, with respect to this latest deportation, and will, where applicable, incorporate views and perspectives in the improvement of its own protocols governing deported persons from Jamaica”.
He pointed out that the ministry was also awaiting the outcomes of the legal challenges in the UK and would “give support” where necessary.
The Opposition on Wednesday said it was concerned that the deportation took place with the Government’s consent. But Montague, in his statement, rebutted that it was the previous Jamaican Government that had, in April 2007, signed a memorandum of understanding with the UK Government, making it compulsory for Jamaica to accept persons who are deported from there. At the same time, he called for the public to respect the privacy of deportees.