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Desmond McKenzie pleads for 'special attention' for West Kingston

Published:Wednesday | February 12, 2014 | 3:15 PM

Jovan Johnson, Gleaner Writer

The Member of Parliament for West Kingston Desmond McKenzie is claiming that a programme to enhance the security of citizens is not being felt in his constituency, which is being affected by high levels of violence.

The assertion from the MP in the Parliament yesterday, followed an update from the National Security Minister Peter Bunting on the work of the Citizen Security and Justice Programme.

Bunting told legislators that he’s not satisfied with all the components of the programme although he acknowledged that social intervention projects have impacted on the lives of thousands of young people.

He also pointed to surveys which he said show reductions in crime and violence in targeted communities.

However, McKenzie suggested that the effectiveness of the programme may be compromised because, instead of incorporating the needs of the areas, communities are told what to do.

WATCH: West Kingston residents claim police brutality>

Meanwhile, Bunting said the design of the current phase of the project was done in 2009 and there were few modifications he could have made after taking office in 2012 when the project was already very advanced.

The National Security Minister said for the upcoming phase three, US$55 million is being targeted for a four to five-year period.

Bunting said he will update the Parliament as soon as the negotiations with international partners are complete.

The Citizenship Security and Justice Programme which started in 2001, operates in 50 communities across eight parishes and seeks to prevent crime and violence.


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