JIS News

Prime Minister P. J. Patterson has announced that the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) would be relocating its headquarters from its present Old Hope Road premises to the former Cable and Wireless building at the corner of Duke and North Streets in Downtown Kingston.
Mr. Patterson made the announcement yesterday (January 9), at a press briefing at Jamaica House, where he discussed matters that arose at last week’s three-day Cabinet retreat.
He told journalists that the pending relocation of the JCF headquarters was being done as the site was not only suitable and centrally located, but the move was also a statement to criminal elements that the Police would be very busy in troubled areas that are within close proximity to the future headquarters.
“It is a sign and a clear signal that we intend to restore law and order in the heart of our capital city and the message we want to send to all the criminal elements that surround that vicinity is move out quickly, because the Police are moving in soon,” the Prime Minister said.
He indicated that alterations would have to be made to the building that is intended to be the Command and Control Centre of the Police Force, and matters that would require attention included the relocation of telecommunications equipment, access to parking facilities, and improvement in security around the perimeters of the new headquarters.
Mr. Patterson said he has requested that the transactions facilitating the relocation be completed within four weeks, but emphasised that the actual move would take much longer.
“We want the actual transfer to take place in the shortest time after the conclusion of the necessary acquisitions and transfers,” he said.
The Prime Minister noted that new headquarters would be equipped with modern technologies, such as the automated palm and fingerprint identification system and the integrated identification system, both of which would significantly enhance the crime fighting and intelligence capabilities of the JCF.
“We are also going to have an integrated management system to improve the interconnectivity amongst principal agencies of the criminal justice system. This piece of technology will allow the police, the courts, and the correctional facilities to keep track of persons who have been charged with offences, those who face the court, and those who are serving sentences,” Mr. Patterson added.
The Prime Minister said that the National Housing Trust (NHT), has expressed a desire to buy the lands housing the current headquarters.
“Out of that sum, we intend to purchase the Jamintel building, so that there will be no additional requirement on the budget. We also expect that out of the sum for the purchase, we will be able to do structural alterations,” Mr. Patterson informed.