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Story Highlights

  • Feelings of great pleasure and happiness reverberated from Jamaicans who were conferred with various awards at the ceremony of Investiture and Presentation of National Honours and Awards, yesterday (October 15), at King’s House.
  • For their significant contributions to nation building, 206 persons were recognised at the event, presided over by Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen.
  • Also in attendance were Lady Allen; Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness and Mrs. Holness; Mr. Fitz Jackson, who represented Leader of the Opposition, Dr. Peter Phillips; members of the Cabinet and the diplomatic corps, other dignitaries and guests.

Feelings of great pleasure and happiness reverberated from Jamaicans who were conferred with various awards at the ceremony of Investiture and Presentation of National Honours and Awards, yesterday (October 15), at King’s House.

For their significant contributions to nation building, 206 persons were recognised at the event, presided over by Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen.

Also in attendance were Lady Allen; Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness and Mrs. Holness; Mr. Fitz Jackson, who represented Leader of the Opposition, Dr. Peter Phillips; members of the Cabinet and the diplomatic corps, other dignitaries and guests.

Celebrated actor, singer, songwriter and social activist, Harold George Belafonte Jr., was awarded in absentia with Jamaica’s fourth highest award, the Order of Merit (OM), for his outstanding contribution in the field of music. He will be conferred at a later date as he is ill.

Godfrey Dyer, CD, Chairman of the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), told JIS News that he “is on top of the world,” after being conferred with the Order of Jamaica (OJ), for his exceptional contribution to the field of tourism.

“I am very grateful for it. It came as a surprise,” he said, while pledging to continue to serve his country.

Another OJ recipient, Earl Wesley Jarrett, CD, said the recognition has made him more humble, and “I hope it serves to get other persons to volunteer, and to commit to Jamaica, and the advancement of the Jamaican people.”

He was awarded for contribution to the banking and financial sectors, public service and volunteerism.

The other OJ recipients were: Grace Beverly Jones, for contribution in the field of entertainment internationally; and Giuseppe Francesco Maffessanti, CD, for contribution to the construction industry, social development, welfare and philanthropy.

For Alia Atkinson, who received the Order of Distinction in the rank of Commander (CD), for outstanding representation of Jamaica in the field of Swimming, it was a blessing to be among the other honourees.

“It is pushing me to do more, to get more people…to bring everybody into the joy of swimming,” she said.

Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, who received her OD for distinguished contribution in safeguarding the interests of Jamaican nationals in the USA Diaspora on immigration matters, said her work is morally and ethically grounded, and “come from the beautiful island of Jamaica.”

In recognition of his contribution to the trade union movement and public service, Senator Kavan Anthony Gayle was awarded the CD. He credited the award to his dedication to defending the rights of workers.

“It is an elated feeling, and something that motivates you to push on and to do more,” he said.

Entertainer, Winston ‘Yellowman’ Foster, who got an OD, said he felt so very happy after receiving his insignia from the Governor-General.

Some 31 persons received CDs and 36 got ODs. The Badge of Honour for Gallantry was bestowed on nine civilians for varying acts of bravery they displayed to save lives. They are: Grace Allen, Kimani Ramon Anderson, Sophia Lorraine Cameron, Verlyn Faithie-Ann Douse, Jevon Keith Lewis, Camille Errolyn McIntosh, Lloyd Alexander Nelson, Selena Reid and Aristel St. Joy.

Corporal Malachi Delroy Davis and Corporal Omar Seymore Wilson of the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) and Inspector Allison Nadine Grant-Johnson of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) received the Medal of Honour for Gallantry. Nineteen individuals received the Badge of Honour for Meritorious Service, while 30 got the Badge of Honour for Long and Faithful Service. Thirteen members of the JDF; 21 members of the JCF and 14 members of the Jamaica Fire Brigade were conferred with the Medal of Honour for Meritorious Service.