Jamaica News, January 24, 2018
(Exclusive) (Mckoy’s News) War Zone or Murder Capital of the World? We first published this article in 2017. Today months later in 2018, Jamaica in the midst of the awaited state of Emergency in St James, Jamaica as the government and security forces move to make Jamaica safe again.
Looking at the chart below, it does spell the questionable heading of this article. Is Jamaica a “no problem” island surrounded by the Caribbean Sea or a battlefield exhibiting and testing all categories of weaponry?
Well, McKoy’s News became very concerned and decided to “touch base” with the Commissioner of Police, George Quallo and posed a few questions to him.
Follow the question and answer procedure below to read the answers we received from the Commish.
Commissioner’s Response to Questions
McKoy’s News: Are there any plans for you and your team on how to tackle this problem that has seemed to spiral out of control? And if so, how will you implement them?
Commissioner Quallo: The JCF is always implementing measures to effectively treat with incidents of crime and violence. One of our major priorities is the reduction of murders and other serious crimes. We have seen an increase in murders and shootings in some parishes and divisions. We have done the assessments and investigations have revealed that in most instances the deaths are linked to some form of gang-related or criminal activities.
There are some very unfortunate cases where persons are killed or injured because criminals with no care for the rule of law, fire indiscriminately at their intended targets and in the process kill others who are not linked in any way to a criminal network or associated with criminal activities.
This type of behaviour has resulted in multiple victims and multiple deaths, which has also impacted the increase of murders. It has also escalated the level of fear among members of the society. We are doing a number of things to include:
- Increased intelligence gathering on gang members and gang-related activities
- Increased police presence in crime hot spots
- Intelligence-led targeted policing operational activities
- Increase the police/citizen interaction through community engagement activities that are being spearheaded by the Community Safety & Security Branch in collaboration with Divisional Commanders.
- Increase communication with the public through traditional and social media
The greatest threat to safety and security is an illegal gun in the hands of criminals. We have ramped up the “Get The Guns Campaign” and since the start of the year, we have seized 567 illegal firearms and 13,075 rounds of ammunition. The more guns seized from the streets is the less likely the criminals will have the means to use them to commit crimes.
McKoy’s News: Do you think that these plans, when implemented, will get results in the reduction of the murders being carried out on a seemingly daily basis?
Commissioner Quallo: We do expect the activities to have some impact on the criminal activities in the areas of concern. We are anticipating some immediate and medium-term lull in some areas as we work towards some more long-term and sustained initiatives.
McKoy’s News: Are you and your team ready (in every way and form) to have these plans implemented?
Commissioner Quallo: I am satisfied that the members of the JCF are fully committed to supporting all operational strategies that will result in the prevention and reduction of major crimes. On that basis we are ready.
We now wait with great anticipation and expectation to see a change, rapid or slow in the above-stated rates. Just as Jamaica was recovering from the label as the Murder Capital of the World and one of the most dangerous places to visit our beautiful island is again ravaged by a high murder rate.