Sunday, November 24, 2002

No doubt intending to reassure the Jamaican populace, assistant commissioner of police Osbourn Dyer & psychologist Leachim Semaj, interviewed in the Gleaner today, say "Jamaicans need not be overly worried by the current spate of brutal murders taking place in the capital city as the murders are not random."

"Figures last week from the Constabulary Communication Network (CCN) also showed that of the 937 murders [for 2002 thus far], domestic murders accounted for 252 while gang-related murders stood at 145.

"Murders with robbery as their motive were 116, while the motive of some 60 murders are undetermined so far. Political killings accounted for 12, with another 10 being as a result of mob killings.

"Two of the murders were due to the confrontation with the police while six victims were raped then killed this year....

"Psychologist Dr. Leachim Semaj feels that 'the media is playing on people's weakness.

"'Over the past five years, 35 per cent of the murders are domestic, 35 per cent are retaliatory and 15 per cent drug-related. Ordinary citizens are not affected.

"'The killings are not random. They occur in communities that exist outside the law. In these communities, people are preying on their own. They protect the known criminals, they know who the wrongdoers are and out of fear they do not pass on information to the state,' Dr. Semaj said."

What's more shocking here: the magnitude of the figures under discussion; or the callousness of Dyer & Semaj's de facto admission that Jamaica's urban underclass are beyond the pale of civil society & the concern of "ordinary citizens"; or their deliberate avoidance of the truth that none of this can change as long as Jamaica's politicians continue to depend on the direct & indirect support of the criminal warlords?

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