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Desmond declares war... ...

Published:Sunday | March 17, 2013 | 12:00 AM
Desmond McKenzie (left) member of parliament for West Kingston, tries to control an irate resident (right) as firefighters put out a blaze that destroyed several houses in Denham Town late last year.-File

as young thugs hold West Kingston under siege - 20 killed since January

Member of Parliament for western Kingston, Desmond McKenzie, has declared "war" on a group of "shottas" related to former strongmen in the area and who are being blamed for an upsurge of violence in the area.

According to McKenzie, these young men are determined to unleash unprecedented mayhem in the constituency to gain control.

Asserting that no less than 20 lives had been lost in the bloodshed since the start of this year, McKenzie vowed that he would have no lot or part with members of at least two families, allegedly attempting to regain control of communities in western Kingston.

"There will be no dynasty of dons, and I am not going to allow the area to be taken over by any forces of destruction, and I have said it loud and clearly, I am not sitting with that element. I am in no argument with that element. I am not bringing them to any table," declared McKenzie one day after a woman was killed along Chestnut Lane in Denham Town.

The following day, one man was shot in the back along Luke Lane as the violence continued.


It has been alleged that young men related to two families, who for decades controlled sections of west Kingston, are now trying to continue this tradition and are using the gun to force persons to bow to their dictates.

But McKenzie is adamant that these young shottas will not enjoy free reign.

Pointing to the Chestnut Lane/Regent Street areas as the epicentre of the violence, McKenzie told The Sunday Gleaner that the clashes have been brutal and deadly.

"A seed was planted and that seed has grown, and it is that foundation that is wreaking havoc ... and I am not afraid to say it, the destruction comes out of that seed that was planted years ago," asserted McKenzie, "and we are now seeing the results of that.

"These are criminals. I am bold enough to describe them as enemies of an area that wants to free itself of that kind of association," added McKenzie.

He argued that the men unleashing terror on western Kingston are criminal elements bent on extending the undesirable dynasties of their forefathers.

A furious McKenzie described as unprecedented the fear that has gripped the constituency because of the terror that has been unleashed by the groups of young men from both sides of the political divide.

"What we have now is a generation of youngsters who feel that that there is a role for them to play and that there are vacancies in terms of donmanship that they want to reposition themselves," asserted McKenzie.

He charged that the new generation of emerging dons were attempting to flex their muscles over turf.

"What we find happening in the constituency is no longer a situation where it is a PNP (People's National Party) against the JLP (Jamaica Labour Party). That doesn't exist anymore as former member of parliament Edward Seaga broke down the political cycle some 15 years ago."