Thu | Aug 17, 2017

Look to the army for a commissioner

Published:Saturday | December 31, 2016 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

First, let me thank Dr Carl Williams for his many years of service to the police force and the nation. I would like to wish him the very best in his retirement.

Dr Williams' resignation gives us the opportunity to put our house in order as far as crime is concerned. Since the start of the year, more than 1,300 people have been murdered.

Jamaica is not at war. Yet, our murder rate would suggest that we are. We are at a crisis point. We need a radical solution to crime in this country. We need to treat the situation as if we are at war with criminals.

We do not have 90 days to squander while people's lives are at risk. The Government cannot be serious about stemming this crime epidemic. While they are deliberating, based on the current murder trend, more than 350 people could be murdered. I take this opportunity to remind Prime Minister Andrew Holness of his statement on his campaign trail: "If you want to go to bed with your door and windows open and wake up in the morning and still be alive, don't make the mistake of voting for the PNP."

REGIMENT OFFICER

We need to have a permanent police commissioner in place now. We have the personnel within the army to replace Dr Williams with immediate effect. I am suggesting to the Government that we recruit an officer from the army, such as Major General Rocky Meade, chief of defence staff, who has wide experience of leadership and respect among his fellow officers. This high-ranking officer is more than qualified to do the job. Nothing short of appointing an officer from the regiment will do.

If we are to grow the economy, crime-reduction must be at the forefront of any plan. Crime and the lack of results are hurting us all. It is the number one concern of the returning residents and most if not all law-abiding Jamaicans. You cannot achieve economic growth without lowering the crime rate.

We cannot continue to do the same things and expect a different result. We need to change our mindset and do things differently to get the results we so badly need for growth. Grab the bull by the horns! Install an army officer to do the job for all Jamaicans.

Percival LaTouche