PNP, JLP people bleed the same red blood

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

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We don't suppose that Acting Commissioner of Police Clifford Blake had meant to suggest that the only gang of concern in St Catherine is the Klansman Gang for purposes of the state of public emergency in the St Catherine North police division.

Still, by singling out that gang, he would have inadvertently suggested that the security forces were not as interested in the other five well-known gangs in that division, including the One Order gang.

Sensible people know that, given our woeful tribal divisions, any State agency involved in policy or operational initiatives must tread carefully in order not to offend political sensibilities, even in matters of crime and, perhaps, especially in matters of crime.

It is well known that the Klansman Gang has been linked historically to the Opposition People's National Party (PNP). This notorious gang has fought many pitched battles with the equally nefarious One Order gang, historically linked to the ruling Jamaica Labour Party (JLP).

Between them they have shed much innocent blood and unleashed mayhem, notably on Spanish Town, the old capital, in their fight for territorial control of the main bus terminus and other lucrative spots targeted for extortion.

The other lesser known gangs in St Catherine North are the Homestead Gang, the Unity Gang, the Neil Fearon Gang, and the Unruly Gang.

Then, of course, there are the 18 gangs operating in St Catherine South which must be targeted too, or else they can easily provide haven for the fleeing gangs from the North.

Among the gangs from the South are: the Umbrella Gang, the Square Stinger Gang, the Little Lane Gang, the Africa Gang, the Braeton Gang, the Guerrilla Unit Gang, the Craft Crew Gang, the Gaza Gang, the Gulf Gang, the Boston Gang, the Banger Gully Gang, the China Town Gang, the Lynch Mob Gang, the One Motion Gang, Portmore Lane Gang, and the Ants Gang.

The gangs will co-operate and defend each other, as we saw in the “Dudus” Coke incursion in Western Kingston in 2010 when security forces tried to capture the former Tivoli Gardens strongman who was wanted by American authorities for drugs and gunrunning.

For sure, the 48 murders since the start of 2018 in St Catherine North justifies the state of public emergency which was declared Sunday in the area. Moreover, we are told that many of those murders are the responsibility of the terrorist Klansman Gang.

We don't see the need for the police or anyone to declare that the operation will primarily focus on the Klansman Gang. All criminal gangs must be hunted and eliminated under powers granted by law. Their guns are no respecter of persons. PNP and JLP people bleed the same red blood.

As we are never tired of saying in this space that there will be no successful crime fighting if partisan politics is involved. Only when Jamaicans are mobilised and acting together will we achieve sustainably low crime and murder rates.

In respect of the current operations, we think the plan to deploy recruits of the recently introduced Jamaica National Services Corps is a good one as they will be under the command of experienced soldiers, primarily for operation support and administrative activities, before being absorbed into the Jamaica Defence Force.

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