The Senator says that the claims are deeply troubling, as by definition that is the job of any police force and is no less that of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF).
The Justice Minister on Wednesday, December 12, 2018 mounted a defence for the Government's insistence that a State of Emergency (SoE) is the tool needed to maintain the gains made in St. James in fighting crime.
Pointing out that the State of Emergency legislation was not designed to be used and therefore cannot be lawfully used as a crime fighting tool. Senator Scott Mottley said this line of argument brings into question the Administration’s familiarity with the intent and purpose behind the SOE and the Constitutional requirements behind its declaration.
The Opposition Shadow Minister maintains that all the measures that have been identified as useful strategies and deployed in St. James for reducing crime are the tools that lawfully empower the police to serve, protect and reassure law abiding citizens.
“We maintain that significant elements of policing under the SOE can continue without the detentions that have not borne any fruit.” The Senator said.
She said by his utterances, the Minister is now signaling to criminals that the Government has no confidence in the JCF’s ability to get their job done.
“We have no information that the arrest of close to 4,000 citizens in St James have led to the dismantling of gangs, severing ties between criminals, gathering of intelligence on gun trade or the local and foreign criminal networks etc, making it unwarranted
Mr. Chuck's assertion that the SOE is helping citizens gain confidence in the police and that to remove it is to setback growing trust is unfounded.” She said.
“Rather, the arbitrary arrest and detentions of fathers, sons and husbands serve to erode those very hard won gains built up through strong community policing over recent years.”
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