Mr. Speaker, I stand to update you on a number of issues pertaining to National Security.
It is a fact that during the year 2017, 1616 persons were murdered in Jamaica and there were 1469 shootings. However, it is also true that we had significant reductions in the other five major crime categories and collected 859 illegal firearms and 21,764 rounds of ammunition.
While we continue to be concerned and rightly so about the level of murders, we should not allow that to cause us not to recognize the combined efforts of all the stakeholders in the security sector that have resulted in substantial declines in five of the seven major categories of crime. Notwithstanding the gains, as Minister, I am the first to admit that while we are heartened, we are still not satisfied.