Thousands Greet Olympians in Montego Bay


Thousands of flag-waving adults and children, including students, lined the streets from the Donald Sangster International Airport to Sam Sharpe Square in Montego Bay on Saturday (October 16), to welcome and pay tribute to the country’s successful Olympic and Paralympic teams.
Headed by double gold medallist, Veronica Campbell, the Olympians were greeted by over 20,000 well wishers.
Addressing the large crowd in Sam Sharpe Square, Minister of Local Government, Community Development and Sport, Portia Simpson-Miller said the entire country was proud of the tremendous contribution the athletes had made to the country’s international image.
“They carried the Jamaican flag proudly and waved it high, and how proud we all were when we heard the sound of our National Anthem that echoed all through the National Stadium in Athens and you the people of western Jamaica have paid a fitting tribute to our outstanding sons and daughters today,” the Minister said.
“We must note that the team moved as a united team and brought success. What this is saying to us as a people in this country, is that we as Jamaicans need to now recognize how successful they were when they united as a team, and we as a people must unite also,” she emphasized.
She added that the best tribute the people could pay to the Olympians was to unite as a people around the issues and problems the nation was facing.
“The call therefore to all of you, as we celebrate the achievements of our athletes, is unity . We have to move from the dirt of dis-unity to one of unity and build this country in the interest of all our people,” Minister Simpson-Miller told the gathering.
Expressing thanks to the large and appreciative crowd, Miss Campbell said that the entire team was happy for the support and felt good that they were able to represent Jamaica.
“Our aim is to let the country unite and come together as one. I just want to encourage all parents to encourage their children to grow up in the right way. Make sure you have a positive attitude at all times. Children, in everything you do, work hard and always strive for excellence,” she said.
“As you know, Jamaicans are powerful people and we need to let the world know how powerful we are. I am proud to be a Jamaican and I want everybody here today to stand up tall and let the world know that you are proud Jamaicans,” Miss Campbell added.

JIS Social