PSOJ calls for effective short-term crime strategies to contain crime Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

The Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ) has sort to reinforce it recent call for the nation’s political leaders to get behind closed doors to reach consensus on short-term crime strategies to contain the violent crimes and murders that are being committed by gangs nationally.

The PSOJ has also called for resumption of the Vale Royal Talks involving the Government and Opposition.

On Thursday, the organisation said the Government must take responsibility and act in the best interest of the country.

In a statement, it said the Government and the security forces “need to be proactive and lead the way in serving and protecting Jamaicans, as many of our citizens from all walks of life are living in a state of fear and anxiety as they face unrelenting, atrocious criminal acts.”

The PSOJ said the commissioner of police has indicated that 71 per cent of the over 1,000 murders nationally so far this year were committed by gangs, added that “they (the gangsters) continue to walk our streets with confidence, knowing that the long arm of the law has not been able to have them face the consequences of their rampant, cold-blooded criminality.”

The private sector body added that the “collateral damage” of that 71 per cent of murders are “being seen with mothers, children, young men, hardworking citizens, members of a community enjoying themselves at a football match, being slaughtered.”

It elaborated that “Jamaicans are losing hope, and it certainly appears that under our current legal construct and, or with the resources that are available to be deployed, that we don’t have the capacity to mount a sustained onslaught on these gangs that will reverse the trajectory of murders and mayhem.”

The PSOJ noted that the medium to long-term pillars of Plan Secure Jamaica are being executed under the oversight of the Crime Monitoring and Oversight Committee (CMOC).

It acknowledged that investments in technology, capacity and infrastructure continue to be made in the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) and the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF), and socio-economic programmes are being executed, with more to come.

Likewise, it said reforms of the justice and correctional institutions continue, and pieces of important legislation, such as the Firearms Act, the Bail Act and the Unexplained Wealth Act are in the pipeline.

The PSOJ said all those efforts will give the security forces more tools to combat crime in the medium to long term, but it is imperative to deal with the immediate crisis at hand.

In doubling down on the seriousness of the present crime problem, the PSOJ said it “has been patient and constructive in supporting our leaders, but this situation is now becoming untenable, and is taking a serious psychological and physical toll on us all as we live with the constant fear from the overt and senseless violence which often claims lives and destroys families.”

The release added that the body is “calling on the Government and our leaders of the JCF and JDF to engage our people and put forward and execute sound and effective short-term violence strategies within our legal construct to mount a credible and sustained effort to neutralise these gangs, to reduce the wanton and horrific loss of lives.”

It said success in that regard would go a long way in restoring public confidence and providing some comfort and hope to the general population.