A sum of $81 million has been allocated to the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) Accountability Programme in the 2013/14 Estimates of Expenditure now before the House of Representatives.
The programme aims to strengthen the investigative capacity of the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM) and to fulfill its mandate of external oversight of the JCF.
The allocation for 2013/14 will go towards the procurement of forensic laboratory equipment, consumables and two vehicles.
It will also be used to support the unit’s public awareness efforts; open additional satellite centres islandwide; and strengthen INDECOM’s capabilities.
Physical achievements up to February 2013 include: the opening of a laboratory at headquarters to conduct forensic analysis; procurement of forensic items including cameras, bullet collection chamber, comparison microscope, WestPoint Digital Evidence Machine, and a mobile forensic unit (in transit); and the engagement of a forensic analyst to reduce backlog and provide training.
The programme is being funded under a grant from the United Kingdom (UK) Department for International Development and is scheduled to be completed by March 2015.
By Chris Patterson, JIS Reporter