Authorities Provide Details for Vaccinated Fans to Attend W’Cup Qualifier at National Stadium

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The Government of Jamaica and the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) on Monday announced that an online portal, the event authorization system, will be the mechanism employed to dispatch tickets online for interested fully vaccinated spectators wishing to attend the FIFA World Cup Qualifier between Jamaica and the US on November 16.

The system is expected to be activated on Wednesday at 7:00 am (Jamaica time) and is to facilitate applications on a first-come-first-serve basis.

At the virtual presser on Monday, Jamaica’s Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton said his ministry will verify the authenticity of the vaccination cards using its online database against fraudulent requests.

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Dr Tufton said applicants, 18 years and older, must provide proof that they are fully vaccinated for at least two weeks.

However, it is unsure how they will treat with spectators, local and foreign, who have been vaccinated overseas.

JFF President Mike Ricketts gave his thoughts on how such cases would be dealt with.

“They [foreign applicants] will have to present their credentials, including their Government-issued ID and vaccination cards. We can’t validate their cards, and it’s the same thing for Jamaicans who did their vaccination overseas,” Ricketts explained to the Jamaica Observer newspaper.

Meanwhile, Dr Tufton made it clear that allowing fans inside sporting venues is for now a project under construction.

“It’s a pilot; it’s not necessarily going to be foolproof, but we will try to make it that way. Over time, with the QR code [electronic vaccination passport], we will be in a position to provide a better system,” he told the Observer.

“Those who have made the effort and have understood the message and responded to the message to go out and protect themselves and, by extension, their families and workplace and their sporting environment, should no longer be grouped with those who have not,” Tufton said at the presser.

Only 5,000 tickets will be sold as part of the Government’s efforts to stem the spread of the virus, though the capacity of the National Stadium is said to be between 28,000 to 30,000.

Ricketts explained that 4,000 tickets will be made available for purchase in the Bleachers at J$2,000 each and 1,000 tickets for the Grandstand at J$7,700 each.

There will still be mask-wearing and physical distancing requirements on match day.

Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie told the presser that the event authorization system is a game-changer, going forward.

“The app is a game-changer and we believe it will help to manage various [other] events. I am hopeful and I am positive that we will not have any real issue with the system.”


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