Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness on Wednesday announced States of Public Emergency (SOEs) in eight parishes.

During a press conference at the Office of the Prime Minister, he said the SOEs are in effect in St. Ann, Clarendon, St. Catherine, Kingston, St Andrew, St James, Westmoreland, and Hanover to curtail increased criminal activities and bolster public safety.

Jamaica Loop News said the Government is carefully considering recommendations from the security chiefs, his government decided to notify the Governor-General that it was necessary and appropriate to declare the SOEs.

Holness insisted that the Government has to maximise and use all lawful means to multiply and project its security resources, not only to investigate and interdict after the occurrence of crimes or loss of lives but to increase presence to deter criminals and conduct various operations to pre-empt them.

The Prime Minister said the proof of the security measure’s effectiveness is in the immediate reduction in murders and its follow-on lag effect during periods, going forward.

He added that the Government will continue to be relentless in its efforts to control murders specifically, and crimes generally, and will use all appropriate measures available.

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