National CCTV system awaits funds for launch in February

Friday, January 12, 2018

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — National Security Minister Robert Montague says nearly $3 billion is needed over the next two years for the full roll out of the national closed circuit television (CCTV) system dubbed JamaicaEye.

Montague said the islandwide system is now in its initial phase and implementation is expected to take place next month as the ministry awaits Cabinet approval for the additional funds. The minister's disclosure comes in light of the increased incidents of shooting and murders islandwide.

JamaicaEye will allow citizens and business owners with cameras pointing in the public space to voluntarily provide their camera feed to a restricted team of vetted security professionals at two monitoring centres.

The initial launch of the programme will utilise the feeds of 200 cameras owned by the Government and an expected 300 through public-private partnership in the initial phase.

The video feeds will be passed through a suite of video analytics.

Under the programme, citizens and businesses with CCTV systems will register via a website.

The JamaicaEye project is the brainchild of Montague in keeping with the five pillar crime reduction strategy he presented in 2016.

It was further developed and refined after numerous stakeholder consultations with public and private stakeholder groups in November last year, including the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce and several stakeholders in Kingston and St Andrew.

Montague, in an appeal for more public-private partnership to assist with the building out of the CCTV network said, "The ministry is going on an aggressive campaign to get private camera feeds as this will be a major step forward for the country. Jamaica is one of the few countries that has brought the use of private cameras to function in this capacity. This is how each Jamaican with a CCTV system can help in the fight against crime. We have to take this approach because otherwise the cost would be too expensive for the Government alone. To outfit Kingston alone would have cost the Government over one billion Jamaican dollars."

Montague noted that the camera systems in Montego Bay will be upgraded and additional cameras have been ordered to boost security in that part of the island.

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