The COVID-19 pandemic has been disrupting some events and businesses, and now Carnival in Jamaica will be rescheduled until October 2020. The road parade is now scheduled for Sunday, October 25 and Kamal Bankay, the chairman of the Sports and Entertainment Committee stats that the new date should not affect the total experience persons should expect at Jamaica’s carnival when the season comes.
This was announced at a press conference which was called by the Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett.
“The decision to postpone this event, which was set for about five weeks away, is imperative, because the revellers who commute to the island will need to know that steps are being taken to protect them and the safety of our citizens is important as well. There were numerous discussions with the stakeholders, and we have all agreed that this is something that we must do and announce now,” Bankay said.
As for the costumes, tickets and T-shirts for bands, they will be valid for the staging of Carnival in Jamaica on October 25. There is no need for anyone to demand any changes. There were discussions with ministries, hotels and airline partners who have been waiving the necessary fees for changes. Revellers will not have additional costs and will still enjoy Carnival in Jamaica 2020.”
Bankay, who is also the chairman of Dream Entertainment and owner of Xodus Carnival, revealed that, “It is expected persons will request refunds, but we are putting forward the best option and are fully committed to carnival-goers. We expect persons will work with us and with the leniency of hotel and airlines, persons will re-book; our carnival week was structured in the past, it followed Easter Weekend and October 25 mimics that, it comes after Heroes’ Weekend and the events are expected to cascade in a similar way and provide the same experience.”
However, after the news was circulated, there are some revelers who won’t manage to make it on the new date, and they want a refund.
Xaymaca band leader and CEO Andrew Bellamy has no problems with the new date and said that refunds were not necessary.
PURCHASES Will Be DeliveRED
“All purchases that were made for Xaymaca costumes and event tickets will be honoured for the new Carnival in Jamaica in October 2020 as they will not be doing a refund system,” Bellamy said in a press release.
The decision by the Minister to change the date of the Carnival was accepted by the stakeholders.
Meanwhile Michael Ammar, co-director of Bacchanal Jamaica, said the band is thinking of ways to assist their masqueraders.
“In collaboration with all the bands, we agreed that costumes will still be valid for persons who are able to jump with us,” Ammar said. There are many persons who are sending messages about refunds while some are fine with the new date.
The band director praised the Government, stakeholders and the various industries for quick thinking.
Mr. Ammar also said “The decision is what it is. I believe the Government is making a wise decision to be proactive than reactive. And that’s what happened in other countries, they were reactive to the spread of the coronavirus when they needed to be proactive. We are working with other bands to bring back normalcy and balance to the craziness going on so that we can execute the event that is of value to Jamaica’s economy.”