Opposition votes out states of emergency

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

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KINGSTON, Jamaica -- Opposition Members of Parliament (MPs) voted last night to end the States of Emergency introduced by the government since January, 2017 to curtail crime and violence across Jamaica.

After a lengthy debate, which lasted past ten o'clock last night at Gordon House, the full complement of 33 ruling Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) MPs voted to extend the measure by another three months, but the 20 Opposition MPs present voted against an extension.

The government needed a two-third majority of the 63 MPs to make the crime fighting measure remain constitutionally legal.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness, in a very emotional address, pleaded with the Opposition to give the SOEs more time, noting a 20 per cent reduction in murders islandwide and over 70 per cent in Montego Bay, among the results.

But, Opposition Leader, Dr Peter Phillips said that the country did not need a state of emergency to be safe.

By Balford Henry

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