It is against this background, that Mr. Jackson has again called on Prime Minister Andrew Holness, to immediately set out a real crime plan to arrest the skyrocketing murder rate that continues to grip the nation and traumatize communities across several parishes since the start of the year.
Speaking in a media interview yesterday, Jackson said the crime situation remained a colossal failure by the Andrew Holness led-administration to present a workable solution.
He pointed out that the nation’s runaway murder rate had reached the 1300 mark in 2017 with still two months to go before year’s end, while the current murder wave was taking place despite the much-heralded Zones of Special Operations (ZOSO), and fuelling debate as to whether the declared zones of special operations were correctly determined.
“We have said repeatedly, the ZOSO is not a crime plan and have called on the government to bring a national stakeholder group together to agree on a set of measures to tackle the crisis. Unfortunately, the government continues to resist this common sense approach while the crime rate has climbed to 27% above the corresponding period last year.” Mr. Jackson said.
Last evening, the nation was rocked by news of the barefaced daylight murder of businessman Dennis Ramdial; the brutal shooting of two watchmen at the Thompson Town High School in Clarendon, one of whom succumbed to his injuries and the firebombing of three houses in the St Andrew community of Marverly.
“This unfortunate milestone ought to be a mark in the sand that we can no longer sit by and allow our country to be overrun by criminals. We still believe in the advantage of a national consultative dialogue and again call on the government to bring all stakeholders to the table so that a national consensus on crime can be hammered out, once and for all,” Mr. Jackson declared.
Despite the presence of a ZOSO in Mt Salem in St. James, another 13 persons were murdered in the parish over the weekend, this now totals 57 lives lost in the parish since ZoSO. Add to this, the number of fatalities in other parts of the island such as Clarendon, where two lives were lost in a twenty-four hour period.
“ZOSO is a single mechanism; it is not a crime plan. What is required is a systematic strategy that provides critical resources to the security forces and takes into account a broad range of activities to bring this monster under control. The government’s public relations gimmick cannot save lives,” Mr. Jackson said.
- Countries: Jamaica