The (indecom) Act A Reckless Law Which Kills Citizens And Police Officers Alike…

Peter Bunting National Security Mnister

Peter Bunting National Security Mnister

The Joint Select Committee of Parliament decid­ed that (indecom)the Agency tasked with over­sight of the Police Department. Military and Corrections Department should itself be sub­ject to .…
Well..
Oversight..
Well what do you know, what a Novel con­cept? You mean that final­ly the group of knuck­le-heads debat­ing this issue final­ly had an epiphany? You mean they are final­ly start­ing to get the sim­ple con­cept of checks and bal­ances? I mean even the Politicians are held to some degree of account­abil­i­ty, some­thing which nev­er exist­ed before, why not (inde­com)?

Craolyn Gomes

Craolyn Gomes

After the Contractor General’s ACT was passed many peo­ple includ­ing this writer thought , “Oh great final­ly some degree of account­abil­i­ty”. Naturally many politi­cians past and present were not hap­py with the vig­i­lance and aggres­sive ded­i­ca­tion Greg Christie the first Contractor General brought to the job.
Many were hap­py to see the back of Christie. For the aver­age man on the street Christie was a mod­ern day Savior who saved tax-pay­ers much mon­ey which oth­er­wise would have been siphoned off through illic­it and cor­rupt prac­tices in the con­tracts awards process.
Just last week a mem­ber of the Governing Administration vent­ed his frus­tra­tion with the Office of Contractor General. He claimed that the long delay of con­tracts being reviewed by the OCG places the Administration in a posi­tion in which it can­not car­ry out its man­date to cre­ate jobs. 

Director of Public Prosecutions Paula Llewellyn.

Director of Public Prosecutions Paula Llewellyn.

A rea­son­able argu­ment to make. Yet it was the cor­rupt prac­tices of the politi­cians which made the Office Of Contractor General a neces­si­ty in the first place.

The (inde­com) Act became a real­i­ty because of police offi­cers mis­deeds, as well as mem­bers of the Military and Corrections Department. Many mem­bers past and present are opposed to the Agency under­stand­ably because of their affil­i­a­tions with either of the three Agencies.
This writer is not opposed to (inde­com) the agency . I oppose the oper­a­tional tenets of the Act and I cer­tain­ly am opposed to the Commissioner him­self whom I fun­da­men­tal­ly believe should not have the job as head of (inde­com). Those who read my blogs are well aware of my dis­like for Terrence Williams, not because he heads (inde­com) but because he is on a per­son­al cru­sade to per­se­cute .
I per­son­al­ly do not care about cor­rupt cops get­ting their just deserts. In the short ten years

Terrence Williams

Terrence Williams

I spent in the JCF I was instru­men­tal in the pros­e­cu­tion and impris­on­ment of three cor­rupt cops , whom I was hap­py to see leave the depart­ment.
So I’m cer­tain­ly not an apol­o­gist as some would imag­ine because I do not sup­port the whole­sale per­se­cu­tion of good Cops.
There are some peo­ple who are men­tal­ly inca­pable of mov­ing past cor­rupt cops and embrac­ing the val­ue of good offi­cers to soci­ety.
Those peo­ple can­not be changed, they don’t want to change. The bad cop argu­ment is a per­fect anchor, one from which they have no desire to be unhitched.

Dennis-Meadows

Dennis-Meadows

The (inde­com) Act is the brain-child of the abbre­vi­at­ed Bruce Golding Administration . The law was passed after pub­lic out­cry reached fever pitch about police abuse and extra-judi­cial killings. The truth of the mat­ter is that so called Human-Rights advo­ca­cy and lob­by­ing efforts were more to be cred­it­ed for the laws exis­tence than mas­sive police abuse. Nevertheless a pha­lanx of advo­ca­cy groups emerged all arrayed against the police and demand­ing change. Jamaicans For Justice(JFJ) head­ed by Carolyn Gomes a pedi­atric Doctor, Families against State Terrorism (FAST) head­ed my Yvonne McCall Sobers were just two of the advo­ca­cy groups to seri­ous­ly lob­by the Golding Administration for over­sight of the police.

Both groups had seri­ous back­ing from International Human Rights Agencies to include

Delroy Chuck

Delroy Chuck

the London based Amnesty International and the Washington DC based Inter American Commission on Human Rights. Gomes and (JFJ) were instru­men­tal in pre­sent­ing false , unsub­stan­ti­at­ed and in many cas­es flawed and dis­cred­it­ed infor­ma­tion to her han­dlers in Washington DC about police killings.
INDECOM was born with much input from (FAST) and (JFJ) , how­ev­er there were many more anti-police groups with sig­nif­i­cant pow­er which pushed for a law which would basi­cal­ly shack­le the police once and for all. The Norman Manley Law School and the Island’s Bar Association were instru­men­tal in hav­ing a law passed which would effec­tive­ly send crime sky-rock­et­ing .
The Administration did not both­er to con­sult or con­sid­er the Police , Military or the Corrections Department before for­mu­lat­ing and pass­ing the law. INDECOM was born and Carolyn Gomes was award­ed a National hon­or. 
It did not take long for the Nation’s crim­i­nals to fig­ure out that the Police were now a paper tiger.

Gomes has since stepped down after much scruti­ny by the Government of the Group’s finan­cial records

and con­duct. The alliance between (jfj) and (inde­com) was well known, at least to this writer. This pissed off police offi­cers who

Bruce Golding

Bruce Golding

demand­ed that Terrence Williams the head of (inde­com) be fired after he attend­ed an anti-police press con­fer­ence with (jfj). The Government did not acqui­esce to the Police’s demand but the well of good­will was already poi­soned between the police and the over­sight agency.
The Commissioner of (inde­com) want­ed and demand­ed more and more pow­er to go after Police, this led to a bat­tle with the office of the Director of Public Prosecution. Williams claimed that the DPP was not doing enough to pros­e­cute police trans­gres­sions.
Never mind that Williams had the option to grand­stand but the DPP is oblig­at­ed to present tan­gi­ble evi­dence to a court of law or face unlaw­ful pros­e­cu­tion back­lash.
It’s impor­tant to note that the (DPP) has the pow­er to charge police offi­cers with a crime to quell pub­lic out­cry even with­out the req­ui­site evi­dence nec­es­sary to con­vict. Literally every police shoot­ing in Jamaica gen­er­ates out­cry from some quar­ter or anoth­er.

The tug-o-war end­ed up before Parliament with the DPP sup­port­ed by the Police call­ing for over­sight of (inde­com) . Friends of (inde­com) are ene­mies of the police and they did not aban­don Williams as he pushed for more pow­er to per­se­cute police while notably want­i­ng to have no over­sight of (inde­com). Essentially Williams want­ed to head a super Agency vot­ed into office by no one, but with vast unchecked pow­ers.

Killings continue unabated

Killings con­tin­ue unabat­ed ,

Citizens’ Action for Principles and Integrity (CAPI) says any over­sight body for the Independent Commission of Investigations (Indecom), will ren­der it impo­tent. A joint-select com­mit­tee of par­lia­ment exam­in­ing the Indecom Act has pro­posed an over­sight enti­ty for the inves­tiga­tive and pros­e­cu­to­r­i­al body. Indecom was set up as an inde­pen­dent body tasked to inves­ti­gate mis­con­duct by mem­bers of the police force. Co-Convenor of CAPI Dennis Meadows argues that Indecom, as a com­mis­sion of Parliament, already has par­lia­men­tary over­sight in addi­tion to judi­cial scruti­ny with its financed and oper­a­tions falling with­in the ambit of the Auditor General and the Contractor General. respec­tive­ly. National Security Minister Peter Bunting has stat­ed that there was a dan­ger in con­cen­trat­ing as much pow­er as

As a result of this reckless piece of poorly thought out legislation which placates criminal supporters citizens and police officers alike are being killed with no end in sight.

As a result of this reck­less piece of poor­ly thought out leg­is­la­tion which pla­cates crim­i­nal sup­port­ers cit­i­zens and police offi­cers alike are being killed with no end in sight.

the act has done in the hands of the Commissioner of Indecom. At the time Human rights lob­by group, Jamaicans for Justice said it was research­ing the pro­pos­al that the Independent Commission of Investigations (Indecom) should have an inter­nal over­sight. This lat­est pro­pos­al from par­lia­men­tar­i­ans fol­lows ear­li­er objec­tions to Indecom hav­ing an exter­nal over­sight. In a state­ment the JFJ says it con­tin­ues to engage in robust advo­ca­cy at the pol­i­cy lev­el to pro­tect and pro­mote the human rights of all per­sons in Jamaica. Central to that advo­ca­cy has been the issue of police over­sight. To this end, JFJ sub­mit­ted its com­ments on the pro­pos­al for over­sight of Indecom, to the joint-select com­mit­tee of par­lia­ment review­ing the Indecom Act. The JFJ says its recent sub­mis­sion address­es the issue of exter­nal over­sight of Indecom, as has been sug­gest­ed by some par­ties. The lob­by group says such addi­tion­al exter­nal over­sight of Indecom would be inap­pro­pri­ate and dam­ag­ing to Indecom’s inde­pen­dence, poten­tial­ly revers­ing the pos­i­tive gains that have been made.

In the end the Joint select Committee of Parliament decid­ed that more over­sight was nec­es­sary as we report­ed here and cor­rect­ly so.
At the time the deci­sion was made the sole Jamaica Labor Party Member of the com­mit­tee in atten­dance Delroy Chuck an anti-police lawyer vot­ed not to have over­sight of (inde­com).
In sum­ma­ry (inde­com) was cre­at­ed by the Labor Party .
Dennis Meadows a JLP Senator and head of (Capi) want­ed no over­sight of (inde­com).
Delroy Chuck anoth­er JLP Senator vot­ed for no over­sight of (inde­com).
We have writ­ten about oth­er Labor par­ty aspi­rants here who have demosntra­bly shown a dis­dain for police offi­cers and the rule of law.

We need to know how many more mem­bers of the Labor Party wants unfet­tered pow­ers for an over­sight agency which is not required to face Jamaica’s crim­i­nals. As a com­men­ta­tor I have been stri­dent against the PNP Administration for what I per­ceive to be incom­pe­tence, cor­rup­tion, and a host of oth­er malfea­sance.
In the inter­est of fair­ness how­ev­er it is impor­tant to lay blame for the Island crime sit­u­a­tion square­ly where it belongs, on both polit­i­cal par­ties.

One thought on “The (indecom) Act A Reckless Law Which Kills Citizens And Police Officers Alike…

  1. It is of inter­est that Indecom which was set to inves­ti­gate the actions of the secu­ri­ty forces now also as a say in pro­mo­tions and every aspect of polic­ing. They are not brought into action after police indis­cre­tions or even law­ful actions but, are now deter­min­ing poli­cies to include pro­mo­tion, etc.

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