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The Ministry of National Security today (May 15), signed a contract for the acquisition of five specialised vehicles for the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), to be used in transporting detained prisoners from penal institutions and lock-ups to courthouses.
The $18 million contract was signed by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security, Gilbert Scott and General Manager of GM Challenger Transport Ltd., Nigel Pagan, at the Ministry’s Oxford Road office in Kingston.
According to the Permanent Secretary, the acquisition of the vehicles would supplement the current capacity of the JCF and enhance the security of prisoners being transported and the officers who transport them.
“The vehicles are specifically designed with security provisions to ensure the containment of prisoners being transported and will ensure the safety of officers who are carrying them,” he said.
Mr. Pagan pointed out that the vehicles would be manufactured by General Motors, which will configure the interiors to suit the needs of the Government. He further noted that the delivery date for the vehicles was set for August this year.
The contract to secure the vehicles was approved by Cabinet on April 10. Speaking at a post-Cabinet press briefing last month, Information and Development Minister, Senator Colin Campbell, pointed out that the acquisition of the vehicles, “will ease the severe shortage of adequate vehicles to transport prisoners”.
“The lack of these vehicles is severely restricting the movement of detainees to and from courts and is contributing to the backlog of court cases,” the Information Minister noted at the time.