The Government has increased the capacity of the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) to monitor and safeguard the borders of the country with the addition of a new offshore patrol vessel, officially named Her Majesty’s Jamaican Ship (HMJS) Nanny of the Maroons.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness yesterday (July 29, 2020), commissioned the new vessel into operation at the JDF Coast Guard base in Port Royal.
Prime Minister Holness underscored that the acquisition of the vessel is evidence of the commitment of the Government to ensure the safety and security of the island as part of Plan Secure Jamaica.
“This Government has been very systematic in providing not just the plans on paper but to deliver the tools to ensure that the plan can be put in place. Protecting Jamaica’s maritime borders is imperative for national security and sustainable development including, protecting critical infrastructure and more importantly lives,” said Prime Minister Holness.
In that regard, the Prime Minister said the new vessel will increase our capacity to respond to natural disasters. He added that this response is not only needed for Jamaica, but also the entire region.
Moreover, Prime Minister Holness highlighted that the investment will also assist in decreasing crime on land.
“We see crime on land in our communities and on our streets – much of it is organized criminality around the safe passage of un-costumed goods, contraband, drugs, arms, and human trafficking. If we can reduce the ability of external factors, to use our exclusive economic space and our land space to commit crimes, then we can reduce the level of criminality in our society, and this is a major investment in that regard,” declared the Prime Minister.
Meanwhile, as the Government continues to upgrade the island’s civil defence and national security assets, Prime Minister Holness noted the importance of the citizens working closely with the Government to reduce crime and violence.
The HMJS Nanny of the Maroons is classified in the highest National Honour, Order of National Hero.
The features of the vessel include; an onboard interceptor vessel, an eight (8)-ton crane on board for the loading and unloading of relief supplies, a purpose-built disaster relief container, and it will enable the launch and recovery of an unmanned aerial vehicle among other features.