Tue | Sep 26, 2017

This is not a police state

Published:Wednesday | July 20, 2016 | 7:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Former finance minister, Dr Peter Phillips, while speaking at the People's National Party's Granville divisional conference of Councillor Michael Troupe Sunday, stated that under no circumstance should the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Government of Andrew Holness seek to take away our constitutional rights, as per amending several pieces of legislation, including the Bail Act, which would impinge on our rights.

He commented that there was absolutely no need to amend existing laws. Instead, we should seek to equip the police force and have them proceed to tackle the multifaceted crime problem by enforcing the law and professionally investigating murders.

Dr Peter Phillips rightfully spoke up for the constitutional rights of citizens and for the government to desist from interfering with those laws that protect the rights of citizens. I congratulate him for speaking up for all Jamaicans. Why does this Government want to amend laws, when those measures would jeopardise the safety guaranteed under the Jamaican Constitution and allow widespread abuse and detentions for months without charge?

 

ALL ENTITLED TO BAIL

 

Every Jamaican charged with a criminal act, even murder, is entitled to bail, except under specified situations as outlined in the Bail Act. Why do the Government and the attorney general want to take away judges' discretion in granting bail? Are we seeing an autocracy seeking to step on our constitutional rights?

The JLP Government seems only interested in infringing on our constitutional rights and turning this country into a police state. This is intolerable. And National Security Minister Robert Montague thinks the solution is to give more citizens gun licences so that the murder rate will significantly increase. God help us!

ANDREW BEDASSE

andrewbedasse@yahoo.com

Rock Spring, Hanover