Tue | Mar 31, 2020

New police station coming for Green Acres

Published:Monday | January 27, 2020 | 12:13 AMRuddy Mathison/Gleaner Writer
ACP Gary Griffiths, commanding officer for Area Five, accompanies Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang on a tour of the Bog Walk Police Station, which is currently under construction. The minister had earlier attended the groundbreaking for the  Green Acres Police Station in St Catherine.
ACP Gary Griffiths, commanding officer for Area Five, accompanies Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang on a tour of the Bog Walk Police Station, which is currently under construction. The minister had earlier attended the groundbreaking for the Green Acres Police Station in St Catherine.

The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) will expand its reach in the St Catherine North Division with the construction of a new police station in the suburban community of Green Acres, near Spanish Town.

Ground was broken last Friday for the construction of the facility, which will house some 25 police officers to serve the communities of Green Acres, Kitson Town, Guanaboa Vale, Fairview Park, Ebonyvale and Jobs Lane.

Assistant commissioner of police in charge of Area Five, Gary Griffiths, speaking at the function, said the construction of the Green Acres Police Station highlights the Government’s commitment, through the Ministry of National Security to improve the welfare of members of the JCF, and at the same time, offers ease of access for the public to get to the police.

“So far, 50 per cent of work has already been done on the 38 stations across Area Five and for this we are very thankful,” Griffiths revealed.

Gradual reduction

He touted a gradual reduction in some categories of serious crimes in St Catherine North, in particular murders, which he claimed have been more pronounced since the introduction of the state of emergency.

Griffiths further revealed that intelligence has shown that the communities that will be served by the police station have some level of increase in criminal activities that can be attributed to transient criminals.

National Security Minister Horace Chang who also spoke at the ceremony, lauded the Government’s efforts to reverse what he said were many years of neglect in the security services offered to the population.

“The issue of crime has risen to the top of our priority because people say they need to see the homicide rate decline before they can think about doing the kind of expansion that we want to see.”

“It is on this basis why the Government took the position to make significant investments in security services, and it has its risks as well as its benefits,” Chang observed.

He debunked comments he claimed were made that he is using funds for social intervention to carry out the rehabilitation of the island’s police stations, saying “that’s not true”.

“It’s time we understand that creating public safety is the most important thing in building communities,” the national security minister said.

Meanwhile, Member of Parliament for West Central St Catherine Dr Christopher Tufton who lobbied for the police station to be constructed in the constituency, said the people had high expectations of him and he needed to do the necessary things to bring all concern together.

“I am making a bold prediction that when this police station is completed and occupied by the men and women of the Force, you are going to see the security of the communities establish in such a way you have never seen around these parts.

“I am also predicting that you are going to see a lot of development and prosperity in the communities,” Tufton added.

The building will be a two-storey structure costing over $73 million. It is expected to be completed by June.