ZOSO enhances Jamaica Day festivities in Denham Town
The zone of special operations (ZOSO) did not put a damper on Jamaica Day activities in schools in Denham Town, Kingston, yesterday. In fact, principals believe that the presence of the security forces enhanced safety and order at the institutions.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness last year declared Denham Town a zone of special operations, citing ongoing gang warfare, rampant criminality, and escalating violence and murders as the reasons.
Eugenie Brown, principal of the Denham Town Primary School, said that inspite of the police-military operations, they would not allow Jamaica's traditions to die. She also explained that since the ZOSO, there have been improvements in safety.
"We cannot allow our heritage to die. We must keep our culture alive because no other culture in the world is as rich as Jamaica. We are proud of it," she declared.
"The ZOSO is not a hindrance to the children. They are still coming out to school and having fun. The police and the children are good friends. The police will be having a fish fry, and we will be supporting it, in addition to other activities that we will be a part of."
Karen Smith, who was seen showcasing some of Jamaica's popular foods to her basic school children, said that they are grateful for the security forces, who have brought some semblance of peace back to the community. She said that the aim of Jamaica Day is for her children to develop a sense of pride as they reflect on the country's heritage.
"I do have a good experience with the police officers in that it is much safer for the kids to be at school," said the principal of the Faith Preschool Kindergarten and Nursery on Greenwich Street in the west Kingston community.
"Back then, we had a situation where a lot of violence was in the community and that would scare most parents and me. I would normally be at school nonetheless, but parents wouldn't want their children to be out."