Kingston Gleaner, June 8, 2008

Kingston Gleaner

June 08, 2008

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Issue date: Sunday, June 8, 2008

Pages available: 331

Previous edition: Saturday, June 7, 2008

Next edition: Monday, June 9, 2008 - Used by the World's Finest Libraries and Institutions
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Publication name: Kingston Gleaner

Location: Kingston, Kingston

Pages available: 1,583,478

Years available: 1834 - 2016

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Kingston Gleaner (Newspaper) - June 8, 2008, Kingston, Kingston Which party is ahead? Pollster Bill Johnson is back from the field. Read his findings on dual citizenship, food and petrol prices, and much more. Find out the party standings in The Gleaner on Wednesday. KINGSTON, JAMAICA 144 PAGES including act $100 now NORMAN GRINDLEY/ DEPUTY CHIEF PHOTOGRAPHER Major General Stewart Saunders (right), chief of defence staff, inspects women soldiers during a Passing-out Parade for 101 new members -men and women - of the Jamaica Defence Force -yesterday. The ceremony was held at Moneague Training Camp in St Ann. Survey finds weak support for snap polls Daraine Luton Sunday Gleaner Reporter THE MAJORITY of Jamaicans are not in favour of the holding of a general election at this time, according to the latest Gleaner-commissioned Bill Johnson poll. Parliament is now precariously poised. The Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) holds a razor-thin majority of four seats in the 60 seat House of Representatives following its victory in the general election held in September last year At least five members of Parliament - four on the Government side - are said to be in breach of the Constitution, and are not qualified to sit in the legislature because they hold citizenship in another country as well as Jamaica. This may force Prime Minister Bruce Golding to call byelections in the seats affected, or a snap general election. BY-ELECTIONS PREFERRED However, Johnson and his team found that 54 per cent of Jamaicans preferred the holding of by-elec- Consider early retirement for underperforming cops - jcfgroups Gareth Manning and Mark Beckford Sunday Gleaner Reporters SOME GROUPS within the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) say they would support recommendations to have cops with a history of indiscipline or poor performance retired early. While this is not a recommendation in the recently unveiled JCF Strategic Review led by president of Northern Caribbean University, Dr Herbert Thompson, the police say there is room for this measure to be implemented. The early retirement of underperforming officers was previously recommended in the 2002 report of the National Committee on Crime and Violence, chaired by then Minister of National Security K.D. Knight. Tile proposal was aimed at promoting confidence in the leadership of the JCF and to allow room for the advancement of younger cops. SUGGESTS CHANGE IN CUUURE While not recommending the early retirement Of police officers, the recent JCF Strategic Review suggests a change in culture at the top level of the force to reflect intolerance to corruption. The review team anticipates this attitude would filter down to the lower ranks, forcing them to modify their behaviour or ‘selfselect’ themselves out of the JCF. Assistant Commissioner of Police Justin Felice, who is in chaige of the anti-corruption unit, welcomes a policy of retiring police officers in the interest of the force. He has further called on the KEY RECOMIfENIIATIONS IN THE STRATEGIC REVIEW OF THE JCF ■ Initiate a comprehensive review of the JCF discipline system to j>ring it in line with modern practices, combined with immediate effort to eliminate the backlog of discipline cases. ■ Establish a rpore robust senior decision-making framework and Structure, with current arrangements reorganised into a senior executive committee (comprising the commissioner and deputy commissioners). ■ Establish a performance contract between the PSC and the commissioner of police, setting out objectives and targets against which the commissioner’s performance will be evaluated. Government to pass legislation which would allow the commissioner of police to dismiss members of the force in whom he has lost confidence. “If there is information about the integrity of officers, and officers who are not performing at the required level, if these persons don’t have the commissioner’s confidence, then there should be a method where the commissioner can dismiss or remove them from the workforce,” Felice tells The Sunday Gleaner. Superintendent Michael James, chairman of the Police Officers Association, was also in favour of early retirement. He, however, believes the process should be such that both parties are treated fairly. “We believe in due process; when this is in place we know that there will be the time to sever connections with some officers, as long as there is the assurance of fair play and equity,” he says. “I understand that when there is transformation, you will have to ask persons who are not in line or in sync with the organisation’s mandate and view to leave,” James adds. FOCUS ON POLICING THEMSELVES Corporal Hartley Stewart, general secretary of the Jamaica Police Federation, which represents rank-and-file members of the JCF, says the JCF “should focus on what we are already doing, which has been highlighted by this commissioner and the previous one - police ourselves in a more robust way, where the atmosphere is uncomfortable for officers for whom corruption is an aim or manner of operation”. Referring to the Police Service Regulation of 1961, Stewart argues that the Police Service Commission (PSC) already has powers to ask police officers to retire in the public’s interest. Stewart says if a matter cannot be dealt with properly by the JCF’s internal Court of Enquiry, the PSC can follow a certain procedure and ask the individual to retire. Minister of National Security, Trevor MacMillan, says while there is room for poor performers and undisciplined cops to be retired early, he “can’t say that it is being considered at this point in time. Not from an official perspective.” Police reform critical: A3 »> tions over a general election; 25 per cent favoured a general election, while 21 per cent were uncertain in their response. Hie survey was conducted on May 31 and June I among 1,008 persons in 84 communities across the island, and has a margin of error of plus or minus three per cent. In commenting on his findings, Johnson says although only a quarter of the population wants an election, the views are tempered by who party supporters think can win. “Many JLP supporters feel that if there is a new general election their party would lose,” Johnson tells The Sunday Gleaner. PLEASE SEE POLLS, A3 Dual citizenship Do you think the prime minister should call a general election or by-elections to fill the seats occupied by members of Parliament who have dual citizenship? Breakdown of response by party: JLP PNF (MmM* Gen election    10%    52%    17% By-election    72%    -33%    61% Don’t know    18%    15%    22% Bill Johnson poll, May 2008 *Up to 40% off EVERYTHING ! come get your piece of the cake! FOR 2 WEEKS ONLY YEARS ISN’T TOO LONG TO WAIT NR A SALE nos GREAT! M* HaMtltl Ha umbmII wpmii w eajMvnii UatM 14 toys artar Uattvery See Ii Want H Easy Own IL jcm AAalanaa tnkan HwdtaA #*! [M)cfetl^iTt^D tC> EXfcEL CENCE aa-- Bv?? ssr srar cor sr toll rant i-ms-atl hali (sm-7M3| $0 Down promotion valid until October 4th 2008 an 24 months and 34 months contracts 'Discount not applicable to service work % Discount calculated chs standard list price. Financing is available on single & combined purchases over $15,000 excluding GCT. Financing subject to approval. Sale ends June 14, 2008 J ;