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Stabroek News

Tight security!
published: Sunday | February 26, 2006

Tyrone Reid, Staff Reporter

A STRONG contingent of security personnel from the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) enveloped Jamaica College (JC) and its environs along Hope Road for yesterday's staging of the People's National Party (PNP) presidential elections.

The lawmen stood guard at all entrances to the JC grounds. Everyone who came or went was spot-checked and only accredited persons could enter the premises.

The flow of traffic was severely hampered as the officers cordoned off sections of the major thoroughfare, which caused bumper-to-bumper congestion.

NO MAJOR THREATS

While there were no major threats to breach the security blanket, the officers had their hands full with the youthful exuberance being displayed by the delegates and regular supporters from the different camps who congregated along the Hope Road corridor.

The police could be seen and heard issuing directives for the supporters to desist from congregating on the sidewalk.

"It's just for congestion purposes. We don't have any problems so far," Inspector Robinson told The Sunday Gleaner yesterday.

Police personnel were also on high alert in South St. Andrew and West Kingston where the constituencies of three of the leadership contenders fall.

NECESSARY PRECAUTIONS

On Friday, Deputy Commis-sioner of Police Linval Bailey, who was in charge of yesterday's operations, told senior journalists that although no violence was expected during the election, the police would be taking all necessary precautions in the event that the tensions mount. Central Village and the general Spanish Town area also came in for greater police scrutiny.

Inspector Robinson said that his team was trying to get the supporters to gather at their designated sites instead of on the sidewalks.

Motorists were allowed to drive on the opposite side of the road heading to Papine, as it seemed that no vehicular traffic was being allowed to pass directly in front of the all boys' institution.

At the end of voting for the day, there were no reports of any significant or untoward activity.

  • Even 'Jesus' had a say

    Tyrone Reid, Staff Reporter

    ROSETTA WILLIAMS did not speak one word, but everything she said was heard. Her mission, message and mode of transmission were simple.

    Armed solely with her faith and a sign that read, "Repent. Jesus is Coming Soon", Ms Williams, a member of North Kingston United Pentecostal Church in Grants Pen, was literally and figuratively a voice in the wilderness at yesterday's staging of the People's National Party's (PNP) presidential elections on the grounds of Jamaica College, Old Hope Road.

    While supporters and delegates were shouting and pledging their allegiance to president hopefuls Portia, Peter, Karl and Omar, Ms Williams hailed 'Jesus', whom she promised would arrive soon.

    OPPORTUNITY TO WITNESS

    "My mission is just to spread the word. It is explicit. I don't need to say anything, the sign says it all," she told The Sunday Gleaner. "I decided to capitalise on the opportunity to witness to this large gathering of people."

    She added: "I don't know when I would be able to reach them on a one-to-one basis so I thought it would be best to come today with my banner to remind them that in the midst of electing a new president for the People's National Party they need to repent because the coming of the Lord is at hand."

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