As the fallout from the PNP decision to pull support for the States of emergency across the island Prime Minister Andrew Holness has delivered another salvo at the Opposition Leader Dr. Peter Phillips.
In a media interview, the Prime Minister went on the attack. He said: “The PNP is saying that everything that you do in a state of public emergency you can do without that. This is the greatest rubbish that has been uttered by any political leader in this country. It is false, it is untrue and misleading.
“If you nearly analyse the argument, we have been doing that already. We have been having presence, we have been mobilising the police. When the flare-up in crime in Montego Bay, what were we doing before? How many times did we mobilise the police, send out the military, lived in communities?
“How many foot patrols were in Flankers or in downtown Montego Bay? It was not the absence of police why we had those problems. We were already doing what the PNP is calling for now,” added Holness.
According to Holness, the decision by the PNP to vote against the extension of the SOEs, despite the security forces requesting this, has sent a bad signal to criminals, particularly the masterminds who would be looking at a landscape more favourable to them rather than one where the Government and Opposition are unified in the fight against crime.
He argued that there were other options open to the Opposition rather than ending the SOEs, including discussions of the area of particular concern.
“But in my mind the real challenge was that the PNP simply did not want the continuation of the use of a very effective tool for purely narrow political reasons,” charged Holness.”