Dancehall artiste Elephant Man was put under fire yesterday after a very bold Immigration Officer released a voice note describing his crass behavior after arriving on the island on Tuesday night March 17th, from a European tour with his entourage.
In the voice note, the Immigration Officer (who insisted that everyone should share the recording) revealed her name as Crystal Hall and stated that she was the one who processed the Energy God upon his arrival. She said he came on a flight from Brussels, Belgium and as such was asked if he had visited Germany. She inquired even though he didn’t declare it on his immigration form nor was it stamped in his passport but as an extra precaution decided to anyway since the European countries are now flagged as high risk, being the epicenter of the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Elephant Man seemingly knowing that he would have been quarantined since he had in fact traveled to Germany made the decision to lie to the Immigration Officer and said that he didn’t and apparently persons traveling with him also followed suit.
They were all cleared to leave, however things spiraled out of control when another worker at the airport claimed Elephant Man made an outrageous comment upon stopping at the Cambio on his way out. It is alleged, Elephant Man wished death upon everyone for acting so melodramatic about the likeliness of the coronavirus spread.
Rygin King also came on the same flight from Brussels however unlike Elephant, he declared his visit to Germany on his immigration form. As a result he was ushered into a medical facility for screening. This apparently didn’t go too smoothly either. Not only did Rygin allegedly create a scene (where the police were called in) he also snitched on the former Scar Dem Crew member, by letting everyone know that he in fact traveled to Germany as well. Rygin was furious at the authorities for letting Elephant and his crew pass through the system but held onto him.
It didn’t take long for the authorities and Minister of Health, Dr. Christopher Tufton to get wind of the incident. According to the Jamaica Gleaner, Tufton made a public statement saying “I have asked for an investigation into reports that an entertainer returned to Jamaica from a territory where there is a local spread of COVID19 and failed to declare the country of travel to immigration authorities. It is a criminal offence to make a false declaration.”
It was later revealed that Elephant Man was contacted, screened and self-quarantined at his home. The very apologetic dancehall deejay later took the time to make a video to demonstrate his regret about the matter. In the video today, he publicly apologised to the staff at the Sangster’s International Airport, the Ministry of Health and the Jamaican people. Elephant Man admitted that he incorrectly completed the form, however unintentionally as he was simply exhausted from the long flight.
Rygin King‘s team also came to his defense in a press release yesterday, shutting down allegations that he falsely declared his stay in Germany as well as having exposed Elephant Man. “The artiste did not at any time, mention the name of fellow dancehall artiste, Elephant Man, in any conversation with the authorities”, they said.
However they did confirm that he had an outburst during his cross-examination, their statement said “We admit that the artiste did become a bit boisterous during an exchange with the airport authorities, but this was merely a result of the stress of the journey. At the time he landed in Jamaica, Rygin King had been travelling for 17 hours straight to make it to the island from Belgium via Costa Rica.”
“The stress of the arduous journey, coupled with the reality that the artiste had been forced to cut his tour abruptly, losing shows in Europe and Africa, and racking up significant financial losses, created a potentially contentious situation. These factors may have led to frayed nerves, and for that, we apologise to the fans, the hardworking airport staff and security, as well as the authorities.”
Rygin also released a short video today responding to the airport incident and reiterating some of what his management team conveyed. The deejay said he made transit through Germany, which was indicated on his travel documents but didn’t stay there. He also said he complied with airport authorities, did his screening and came straight home where he is currently self-quarantined at the moment and for the next 7-14 days as per recommended.
Rygin said that is as much of what took place and everyone needs to stop propelling the matter. He closed by wishing everyone good health and promised some new music when he comes out of isolation.