Dominica event organiser to try secure ‘Tommy Lee’s’ release


tommy-lee-spartaROSEAU, Dominica (CMC) – The main organiser of a concert that was due to have featured the Jamaican artiste Tommy Lee Sparta says he is likely to file a habeas corpus in order to get the singer and two others released from detention after they were refused entry into Dominica on Sunday night.

Sparta, who also uses the stage name ‘Uncle Demon’, was due to headline a concert in Portsmouth, north of here.

There has been no official statement by the Immigration authorities, but the main organiser of the concert, Cabral Douglas, confirmed that the artiste and two others had been denied entry.

“They are CARICOM (Caribbean Community) citizens who should enjoy the free movement of persons especially artistes have free movement under the treaty [of Charguaramas governing the free movement of skills, labour, goods, and services] to be able to move freely and work.

“They have been denied that right. They have been denied the right to visit Dominica and that will have implications for future individuals who wish to come to our country to extend their talents and to share with some of their cultural exchange, which is what the treaty had been in place for,” Douglas said on the State-owned DBS radio.

“There is a possibility that serious lawsuit could result,” he said, adding that whether or not the Jamaican artiste was controversial, is immaterial to the fact that he is allowed to practise his craft freely under the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME).

He said the artiste had arrived in Dominica from Russia where he had been performing “and is being denied entry and access into Dominica.

“There is no justification whatsoever, that is outrageous,” he said, adding that efforts were being made to contact Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller to assist in resolving the matter.

“Hopefully the Prime Minister will intervene and if not, we will represent them in the High Court… to file a writ of a habeas corpus,” he added.

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