Security and safety of our people must come first, asserts Prime Minister Harris

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BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, January 4, 2018 (PLP PR Media Inc.) — Prime Minister and Minister of National Security, Dr the Hon Timothy Harris has opined that any country that is unable to guarantee the peace in the environment will never sustain prosperity in the long term.


According to the Prime Minister, over the last three years his Team Unity Administration has invested like never before in the Ministry of National Security “because we believe that the safety and security of our people must come first.” He emphasised that his government wants prosperity for all of its citizens and residents.


Prime Minister Harris made those remarks at the close of year 2017 during the launch of Shadwell Explorers Youth Club at the Skerritt Family-owned and former residence Shadwell Great House on Wednesday December 27.


“We have invested in manpower, we have added new personnel to the police, to the Coast Guard, and to the Defence Force in general,” said Dr Harris. “We have added to Her Majesty’s Prison, the Fire Brigade – every unit of National Security has had increased expenditure in relation to human resource, training, and recruitment.”


The Shadwell Explorers Youth Club is the second such club, after the pioneering Mol-Phil Explorers Youth Club, and is part of the Community Policing Initiative of the Ministry of National Security. Leading the charge in this initiative is Inspector Rosemarie Isles-Joseph who is assisted by members of the Community Policing Initiative.


Present at the ceremony were Commissioner of Police Ian Queeley, Deputy Commissioner of Police Hilroy Brandy, Assistant Commissioners of Police Andre Mitchell, Merclyn Hughes, and Terrence James. Chairing the day’s proceedings was the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of National Security, Mr Osmond Petty.


In his New Year’s message, themed ‘Putting Our People First’, Prime Minister Dr the Hon Timothy Harris noted that his Team Unity Administration will in 2018 invest a record $75 million, the highest budgetary allocation to national safety and security.


“We expect that we will achieve a greater peace dividend,” said the Hon Prime Minister. “I commend the security services for their successes in 2017, to wit a significant reduction in homicides and several other major crimes. My advice to the High Command is that 2018 must witness a further significant reduction in violent crimes and in all crimes in St. Kitts and Nevis.”


Prime Minister Harris advised that his government will in 2018 deliver a state-of-the-art forensics lab, new coastguard facilities, upgraded facilities for the police and fire officers, phase 2 of the CCTV programme and enhanced social interventions.


“It has been a distinct honour for me to participate in the inauguration of two Police Youth Clubs – Mol-Phil and Shadwell Explorers,” he added. “I am looking to the build-out of similar groups in St. Pauls, Cayon, and Sandy Point (in St. Kitts) and in Cotton Ground (Nevis) in 2018. We will protect our children, our future, from the scourge of violent crimes in particular. We are nurturing a better relationship with our Police and the Communities. Our people yeaned for pervasive peace. We are consecrating our Country’s future.”


Prime Minister Harris however, while speaking at the launch of the Shadwell Explorers Youth Club, advised that for the law enforcement to achieve its goals, the public is expected to play its role in support for law enforcement.


“We will leave no stone unturned in our effort to keep our country safe, and we are calling on each and every citizen to follow the excellent example of my administration so far in terms of its commitment, in terms of its tangible support for law enforcement,” stated the Prime Minister. “You can do something, whether it is something big or something small.”


Giving examples, Dr Harris told parents and residents in the Shadwell area that they would be assisting law enforcement by the simple act of protecting their children, or saying to their neighbour who they know is smoking the marijuana that the neighbour cannot come into their house smoking marijuana setting bad example for the children.


“I want you the people of Shadwell and you the people everywhere to take a stand to keep our country safe, and if you were to do that the quality of life for St. Kitts and Nevis would be even better,” concluded the Prime Minister.


“Joy and peace will come when we ensure that we protect the children and in so doing, protect ourselves from the criminal elements who like the devil come to do harm, and we have to take a very hard stand against those who are committing crime.”


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