Prime Minister Andrew Holness has revealed that in the coming months the government will be rolling out strategic policies to address the country’s homicide rate and put in place a plan to secure Jamaica.
Speaking at a brunch with Destination Experience at Devon House on Saturday, January 28, Prime Minister Holness said, “We are making the investments in national security assets to put us in a position to cut the flow of illegal weapons into the island, to limit the movement and activities of gangs, to be able to intercept criminals in the act and to create a real deterrent.”
The prime minister pointed out that all of this is being done in addition to putting in place a new national security architecture that will better integrate all the crime fighting resources which are not all in the Ministry of National Security. “We have appointed a national security advisor whose job it is to bring together all the national security assets to fight crime. So I am confident that we will be able to bring the homicide rate down significantly,” he declared.
According to Mr Holness, in making Jamaica the centre of the Caribbean, the government must ensure that the rule of law is never challenged. Acknowledging that the present situation with crime, specifically murders, poses a challenge, he declared that the country will not be defeated, while noting that in general most crimes are trending down.
In addition, Prime Minister Holness also stated that the government is committed to stamping out corruption. “We are not satisfied with the recent ranking that we have and we are going to redouble our efforts to ensure that Jamaica improves its standing on the corruption perception index. This government is absolutely committed to that. We think it is an important part of attracting investors to our country and so we are going to redouble efforts,” he affirmed.
The prime minister explained that the marginal decline in the perception index is due to the pace at which the country is moving to implement the various pieces of legislation. This he said will be addressed in the next financial year as the government will ensure that legislation is put in place.
Contact: Communications Unit-OPM