PM assures St James residents of safety after SOE

Observer staff reporter

Thursday, January 10, 2019

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MONTEGO BAY, St James — Prime Minister Andrew Holness has given an assurance that measures will be put in place to ensure the safety and security of St James residents in the aftermath of the state of public emergency, which expires at the end of this month.

“I want to give this assurance to the people of Montego Bay that the Government will continue to be resolute and relentless in its pursuit of your safety, security and, indeed, the peace of your communities,” Holness said yesterday.

“We will use all measures within the law, with respect for human rights and the dignity of the person, to ensure that your community remains safe,” he continued.

Following the declaration of the enhanced security measures in St James on January 18, 2018, the parish saw a 70 per cent reduction in murders.

However, citing human rights abuse, the Opposition People's National Party decided against supporting a further extension of the security measures.

“At the end of this month the state of public emergency will expire. It is amazing that when we started this strategy, this use of enhanced security powers, persons were nervous, apprehensive, even fearful of how it would affect business and life in general.

“Now [that it is] coming to its expiration, people are indeed apprehensive, nervous and fearful of what life will be after this measure expires,” the prime minister said yesterday.

He was speaking at the official opening of a new 6,300-square-foot BPO building in Montego Bay, St James.

The facility was constructed by the Port Authority of Jamaica.

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