Mr Lexx thankful after Panama immigration ordeal | Entertainment
After an ordeal in Panama in which he was detained by immigration officials shortly after landing on Wednesday and his cell phone confiscated, dancehall artiste, Mr Lexx, is thanking all those who played a role in his release Thursday evening.
Top of his list were Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Babsy Grange; Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Kamina Johnson Smith; Judith Edwards, head of the Consulate of Jamaica for Panama and all his followers who retweeted his posts crying for help.
Mr Lexx was released and handed back his cellphone at minutes to 8 Jamaica time on Thursday. Relieved, he told THE STAR via a quick WhatsApp message, “Just got my phone back. Will do the interview as me land tomorrow [Friday].”
“They not gonna bar me. Which was all my concern. I wish I had tweeted [you] guys earlier. Thanks @Babsy_grange [you] and [your] team have my highest praise… They eventually realise it’s me, and now all the immigration officers want a pic. lol, smh That’s my world for you. @kaminajsmith thanks a mill,” he tweeted and even shared a picture posing with two immigration officials.
Both Grange and Johnson responded by wishing him safe travel. “I’m glad the matter is resolved. Thanks to @kaminajsmith and her team and my team who worked together. Safe travel. Blessings,” Grange tweeted.
The entertainer had been using Twitter from his laptop to inform his fans about his experience at the Tocumen International Airport in Panama City, sharing a tale of poor treatment after it was unearthed that he had been arrested in the United States in 1997. However, he noted that he has visited Panama several times since and had never had any issues with immigration.
In a tweet early Thursday morning, the Ring Mi Cellie deejay wrote, “I’ve been in an immigration room at Tocumen since yesterday. They detain me and threatening to bar me because I got arrested in the US [in] 1997…. with no chance to explain, no phone call cause for whatever reason they took my phone. They jus have me here.”
Mr Lexx, whose real name is Christopher Palmer, further explained that the case against him had been dropped years ago and questioned, “[How] this is enough for them to bar me from this region? Naaaaaaah dis cyah right”.
His dilemma was heightened by the fact that Panama is a Spanish-speaking country, and not only does he not speak the language, he was also denied the services of an interpreter in order to communicate with the immigration officials. He also flatly refused to sign papers that he didn’t understand and asked his followers to reach out to government officials in Jamaica, including Minister of Culture Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia’ Babsy’ Grange, on his behalf.
“All now me cyah get a phone call, and they keep saying no one speak English… smaddy get Babsy attention fi me nuh cah dis need crowd,” Mr Lexx tweeted.
Persons tagged Minister Grange and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kamina Johnson-Smith, the latter of whom took to Twitter to respond. “Just seeing this and have asked our Ambassador to immediately enquire. Should you have any further information, please send to email@example.com.”
Although he was consumed by his troubles, Mr Lexx used it as a teaching moment.
“One stupid mistake almost 30 years ago, and it still affect me now. Guys, please be responsible with y’all decisions when unuh young. Some [mild expletive] don’t go away,” he warned.