A call is being made for greater collaboration between the private sector and government agencies in the push to achieve public order.
The charge comes from John Byles, vice president of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), who was addressing a press conference hosted by the PSOJ at its offices in St Andrew today (November 30).
“Looking at public order, we are seeing where people for their own convenience are putting everybody else’s life at risk…. overtaking when another car is coming, just because you believe you need to be ahead of the crowd or not stay in traffic,” Byles said.
“It breaks down into where we have tremendous congestion and sometimes huge delays because people are breaking the streetlights and blocking up the roads.”
Byles said Jamaica needs to get back to a place of public order because, with disorder, more serious crimes take place.
“In the approach in Montego Bay, led by Superintendent Vernon Ellis, we started a joint approach with all the government agencies that focused on specific areas… the transportation, the vendors, the traditional business owners, including who have been traditionally marginalised and bringing everybody together on the same page,” he said.
According to Byles, with this approach, vendors and legal transportation providers are now making more money as patrons are more comfortable in the space.
“We have seen this now taken up in the same collaborative approach by Westmoreland under a superintendent there as well,” he further stated.
Byles said this approach is being championed by the commanders of the Jamaica Constabulary Force, but will require more work from other stakeholders.
“We see the benefits but it’s going take all hands on deck. It takes the private sector, micro-entrepreneurs, traditional businesses and all the government agencies working together.”
He said the aim of the PSOJ is to transform all economic zones into areas that citizens can travel to and operate freely.