Thursday 22 August, 2019

Stakeholders crime meeting postponed; Opposition not pleased

Government and Opposition members meet at Vale Royal last week. (PHOTOS: OPM)

Government and Opposition members meet at Vale Royal last week. (PHOTOS: OPM)

The stakeholders meeting to discuss national security and crime issues, and which would have included private sector interests as well as members of civil society, human rights groups, churches and the Jamaica Bar Association, has been postponed.

The meeting, which was scheduled for Wednesday, was agreed following a meeting last week at Vale Royal between members of the government and opposition. That meeting agreed to examine crime-fighting measures after the end of the states of emergency.

With the meeting being called off, the opposition is expressing “extreme disappointment” at the development.

The opposition, in a statement, said it considers these discussions to be critical in achieving national consensus on national security and crime management.

The statement from Opposition Leader Dr Peter Phillips said, although representatives of the prime minister had initially agreed to and announced the meeting for Wednesday, January 16, 2019, he had received communication from the Office of the Prime Minister indicating that there are challenges relating to attendance of some stakeholders and his own schedule.

Phillips said the opposition remains optimistic and ready to participate in this critical discussion with the civil society stakeholders to fulfill a commitment given to the people of Jamaica in the joint statement from the Vale Royal meeting.

The opposition leader is urging the Government to quickly propose a new date.

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