Members of JCF and JDF honoured
Under fire for months, officers of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) and the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) came up to breathe on Thursday, January 5, at a cocktail reception in their honour at the Half Moon hotel in Montego Bay, St James.
Organised by Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Warren Clarke and his team, the event, which should have been held during the Yuletide season, saw in attendance Mayor of Montego Bay Homer Davis, acting Custos of St James Claudette Bryan, members of the judiciary, and an intimate group of well-wishers representing the business community.
Their presence was complemented by Minister of National Security Robert Montague, who lauded them for the mammoth task they have on hand, while empowering them, saying that many of them were qualified to become the next commissioner of police.
Not quick to entertain the argument of recruiting outside Jamaica, Montague pointed out that he believes in Jamaica. "I also believe the requisite skills and competences are here in this country."
He added that from all the evidence he has seen, there are police officers in Jamaica who are not only among the best in the Western Hemisphere, but could also hold their own against officers in First-World nations like the United States, Canada and Great Britain.
"We have a force that has more than 700 serving men and women who have a first degree," the minister said. "Eleven per cent consists of persons with tertiary degrees, while more than 300 men and women have their masters. And to top it off, we have five police officers writing their dissertation for their PhDs."
He pointed out that there are more than 20 lawyers serving in the force, making the JCF one of the best-rounded public bodies in the country.
Complimenting the members of the security forces, the security minister said he knew several persons who have been serving for more than 20 years and had never ever taken a bribe.