Firm and decisive measures necessary

Friday, January 19, 2018

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Dear Editor,

The Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC) is supportive of the state of emergency declared yesterday by the Jamaican Government. It is the JCC's view that the authorities must take urgent and bold measures to address the impact that crime and criminality is having on the Jamaican society and the danger it represents to our prospects for tourism and for investment-driven growth throughout the wider economy.

The overwhelming majority of Jamaicans, the JCC believes, are resolved that the nation should not face another year of bloodletting as occurred last year. And, in light of the horrific murder rate with which the current year began, it was imperative that firm and decisive measures had to be introduced.

The implementation of the state of emergency under the nation's constitutional provisions is appropriate in light of the grave danger posed by gangs and individuals who have for too long been holding the country to ransom and threatening the gains arising from the difficult but necessary economic policies put in place by successive administrations. We must be resolute in our insistence that such an outcome cannot be entertained.

We fully realise that these emergency measures must be implemented in tandem with appropriate sustainable and transformative medium-term and long-term measures. We have the capacity to develop and implement these and it behoves all well-thinking Jamaicans to see how and where they can play a role in taming this beast.

B Larry Watson


Jamaica Chamber of Commerce

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