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JIS News

Prime Minister, the Hon. Bruce Golding, has assured that the threats that have emerged against the safety of the Jamaican people will be driven back, with strong and decisive action by the country’s security forces.
In a broadcast to the nation tonight (May 23), Mr. Golding appealed to all law-abiding citizens to remain calm and support the measures that have been implemented under the state of public emergency for the Corporate Area, as of 6 pm.
He emphasized that “the city is not being shut down”, that people can move about freely and that schools will be in full session on Tuesday.
“I appeal to all law-abiding citizens to remain calm and support these necessary measures. My government is determined that Jamaica must be a land of peace, order and security,” Mr. Golding stated.
Based on information from the security forces that actions were being carried out, which pose significant threats to law and order in the Corporate Area, Cabinet today advised the Governor-General to issue a proclamation declaring the State of emergency.
“Since this morning, violent, orchestrated attacks have been launched on a number of police stations. Two members of the security forces have been shot and injured,” Mr. Golding noted, describing the situation as “a calculated assault on the authority of the state that cannot be tolerated, and will not be allowed to continue”.
He explained that the State of Emergency will enable the security forces to exercise extraordinary powers.
“These (powers) include the power to restrict the freedom of movement, search premises and detain persons suspected of involvement in unlawful activities without warrant,” the Prime Minister explained.
“The security forces have been instructed to observe and respect the rights of citizens to go about their lawful business…there will be some inconvenience as the security forces intensify their surveillance and efforts to ferret out the criminals and return the Corporate Area to a state of calm,” Mr. Golding outlined.
He stressed that this will be a turning point for the nation to confront the evil that has penalised the society with “determination and unqualified resolve”.
The state of emergency will be effective for one month, unless it is revoked or extended by the House of Representatives.