The St. James Police Division pledged its continued focus to maintain law and order in Norwood, St. James, that is currently under a Zone of Special Operations (ZOSO).
Head of Operations in St. James, Superintendent Eron Samuels, while speaking at a Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony in the community on Thursday night (December 22), indicated that although challenges persist, the security forces remain resolute to support the positive transformation of Norwood.
“We understand the challenges that are still in the community and as members of the security forces, we pledge that we will continue to give our all to ensure that we bring the Norwood community to where it wants to go,” Samuels stated.
The ZOSO was declared in the community due to the many deadly gang conflicts and criminal activities in the area. In addition to mitigate and root out internal gang-related conflicts, the crime-fighting operation is also geared towards restoring a sense of protection and hope among residents in the community.
“The Member of Parliament has a vision for the community. Every three to four months you will see changes taking place. Transformation is taking place in the Norwood community, and we want that transformation to continue as it relates to crime and violence,” Superintendent Samuels explained. “We pledge as the St. James Division and members assigned to the ZOSO team, to ensure that we do our best working with you to make the community better,” he added.
National Security Minister, Dr. Horace Chang, who is also the Member of Parliament for the area, had attended the ceremony where he told residents and community stakeholders alike that the Government aims to do all it can to ensure the protection of lives and livelihoods in Norwood.
“I am happy to have the security force here to ensure you have a god evening, but I think we should reach the point where we don’t need this volume of security forces in Norwood to have these kinds of events,” said Chang, who is also Deputy Prime Minister of Jamaica.
The Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony was spearheaded by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) and featured music, dance, and bounce-a-bout among other activities for the entire family.