Jamaica Prime Minister Andrew Holness on Sunday declared a State of Public Emergency (SOE) in the Kingston Western and Kingston Central Police divisions.
Making the announcement during a media briefing at the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM), Media Centre, Holness said the enhanced security measure will initially last for 14 days and is a response to increased criminal activities in the divisions.
A Proclamation to this effect was signed by Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen.
“This will connect the States of Public Emergency existing in the Kingston East and St. Andrew South Police Divisions, creating an effective security corridor along the Waterfront from Bull Bay in the east to Ferry in the west,” Mr. Holness said.
He noted that the space now declared has seen increased criminal activity in the second quarter of this year.
“These areas if left unchecked, have shown historically, that they can spiral to chaotic ends, even having national disruptive impact,” Mr. Holness stressed.
The Prime Minister pointed out that there have been increased criminal activities in extortion, especially around the market districts and the South Coast Highway Improvement Project, along the Harbour View to Bull Bay route.
“At the launch of this project, I was clear that we will not allow criminals or politically connected persons to extort, holdup, or threaten the workers in any way,” Mr. Holness said.
“This is a national project and the Government will deal decisively with anyone who seeks to disrupt or otherwise interfere with the smooth operation of this much-anticipated project for the benefit of all Jamaica and particularly the people of St. Thomas,” he added.
The boundaries of the SOE extends from the west at the Petrojam Oil Refinery in a northeasterly direction on to East Avenue, then on to Maxfield Avenue to the intersection of Russell Road.
The northern boundary extends along Russell Road in an easterly direction from the intersection of Maxfield Avenue and Russell Road to the intersection with Lyndhurst Road and Retirement Road.
The boundary then extends southeasterly along Lyndhurst Road to the intersection with Slipe Road and southerly along Slipe Road to the intersection of Torrington Road.
The boundary continues easterly along Torrington Road to Heroes Circle and continues along the northern perimeter of Heroes Circle to its intersection with Marescaux Road. The boundary then extends slightly north along Marescaux Road then easterly along Connolley Avenue then on to Dames Road to the intersection with South Camp Road.
The eastern boundary extends in a southerly direction along South Camp Road on to Port Royal Street to the coast of Kingston. The southern boundary extends westerly along the coast, then along the St. Andrew coastline to the Petrojam Oil Refinery.