MoBay mayor to ask for extension of state of emergency
Montego Bay's mayor, Councillor Homer Davis, has signalled his intention to call for an extension to the state of emergency (SOE) that has been in place in the parish of St James since January.
This would be the third extension since the start of the year, if granted by the Cabinet.
Addressing students, teachers and parents at the East Central St James annual GSAT awards function at the Half Moon Conference Centre on Sunday, the mayor delivered his message through Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett.
"I must tell you in my moving around that the citizens of St James are saying we need for the state of emergency to continue in this parish," Davis said.
"We won't stop the progress that we are achieving in crime reduction in St James," he told the gathering, pointing to the success since the implementation of the zone of special operation (ZOSO) in Mount Salem and the SOE.
"We have witnessed a 64.4 per cent decrease in murders in the parish up to the middle of June," he declared, explaining that there were 47 murders in comparison to 132 this time last year.
Admitting that 47 murders were still too many, Davis commended the efforts of the security forces and law-abiding citizens, who are working together to reclaim the parish and its city capital from the clutches of criminals.
The mayor said that the St James Municipal Corporation was working with a number of state agencies and corporate entities, and would soon be signing a memorandum of understanding. This is expected to procure much needed equipment to be installed across the city to assist in traffic management and security.