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  • The investigative capacity of the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) will be strengthened this fiscal year.
  • The allocation will facilitate INDECOM fulfilling its mandate of external oversight of the JCF.
  • This is being made possible through an allocation of $100 million to the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) Accountability Programme (Support to INDECOM).

The investigative capacity of the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) will be strengthened this fiscal year.

This is being made possible through an allocation of $100 million to the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) Accountability Programme (Support to INDECOM) in the 2014/15 Estimates of Expenditure, currently being reviewed by the Standing Finance Committee of the House.

The allocation will also facilitate INDECOM fulfilling its mandate of external oversight of the JCF.

Anticipated targets for this fiscal year include: procuring five vehicles for the INDECOM parish offices; procuring of forensic services for six months; procuring capital equipment – digital evidence machine, comparison microscope and laboratory equipment; procuring of consumable – shoes covers, trajectory strings, finger print materials, forensic kits, forensic evidence security bags of various sizes; and procuring  information technology equipment and materials; completing the final stage of training of 30 general investigators at MIND in collaboration with the University of Portsmouth (UK); and conducting forensic training sessions for technical persons.

Achievements up to February 2014 include: establishing the Justice Reform Unit; reviewing the decriminalisation of minor offences, with a view to making proposals for legislative charges; developing the corporate and organisational structure of the Ministry of Justice; reviewing the automatic mediation system in Jamaica, and the monetary penalties found in the over 660 pieces of legislation; developing a prosecution’s manual for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions; and developing a citizens’ scorecard and Human Resource protocols for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Achievements also include: the designing of a social order component of the Justice Reform Programme and commencement of the development of an implementation plan; development of a backlog Reduction Strategy for the courts, which was approved by Cabinet; procurement of a Comparison Microscope, WestPoint Digital Evidence Machine, Mobile forensic unit (in transit); opening of a lab at headquarters to conduct forensic analysis; procurement of  a number of forensic items including cameras, bullet collection chamber etc; and a public relation campaign to create awareness of INDECOM’s anonymous tip line.

The programme, which falls under the Ministry of Justice, is being funded by the Department for International Development and is slated for completion in March 2015.