It was during the campaign trail that Prime Minister Andrew Holness first made the utterance that Jamaicans would be able to sleep with their doors open under a Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Government.
He further stated that, “We must, as a nation, aspire to this ideal and never settle for less than what we deserve. Jamaicans deserve peace and safety.” And he cemented these statements by saying, “It was a serious commitment and one I take personally.”
Now, these bold statements by the prime minister are being regurgitated at every opportunity and especially in light of the increase in violent crimes and the murder tally for 2021 being over 1,400 – a worrying number.
While we understand the circumstances under which the statements were made and want to hold the prime minister to this commitment, what will it take to achieve such a feat?
As a Jamaican citizen, I sure would, someday, love to be able to sleep with my front door open and the grille unlocked, but I am not so sure that I would be able to fall asleep, even if I could. You see, locking the door at nights has always been the norm and, as the saying goes, “never tempt a thief” because he's unable to resist.
Additionally, an open door will attract far more than just a common thief and you could lose your life as a result. So, do I really desire to do this? Umm, nope! I have more realistic desires, but it sounds good to the ear. Such an achievement, though, will mean giving up something. “Faint heart never won fair lady.”
The recent display of emotions by the prime minister at the National Day of Prayer held at the Power of Faith Ministries, when he spoke of the death of little Jezariah Tyrell and the Jones brothers in Westmoreland by the hands of gunmen has drawn mixed responses, ranging from sympathy to ridicule.
The responsibility of running a country comes with numerous challenges and requires selfless dedication that drains every ounce of one's energy. This office will give you grey hairs and high blood pressure in record time.
Nevertheless, laws that will pressure the criminals and bring about order must be put in place to adequately reflect the times in which we are living. When gunmen think nothing of challenging the security forces that's a threat to national security and should be viewed and treated as domestic terrorism.
Yes, we know that Prme Minister Holness is a mere mortal, and miracles are not his forte, but drastic times call for drastic measures. The crime problem is not getting any better, and I don't know about you, but I've had just about enough.
The People's National Party asked for “divine intervention”, and now it's causing you nightmares. You are minister of defence. Fix it, Prime Minister!