Advocate

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Kingston, Jamaica
Advocate

Monday, January 17, 2011

Biased Human-Rights Organisation


All Jamaicans are entitled to equal rights, justice and support from allhuman-rights organisation initiatives. As such, I am immensely concerned about the motive and core mission of a popular human- rights group here in Jamaica. The perceived image of the lobby seems skewed, biased and prejudiced against members of the state and/or law enforcers in Jamaica.
Based on a news report aired on Nationwide 90 FM on January 13, 2011, the lobby stated: "One in every five - approximately 309 - civilians was killed by the hands of the State in the year 2010."
The group and families of the deceased are appalled and insisted on immediate action from all levels of the justice system in Jamaica. Human-rights violations by the State have become a habitual practice over the past years, which have driven fear and hatred into individuals who are affected by actions of the police. This is an offence meted out to the people of Jamaica and should not be tolerated.
Balance Missing
On the other hand, according to Police Commissioner Owen Ellington, in a press statement issued on November 7, 2010, "The murder of Constable Dwayne Brown in November brings to 15 the number of police personnel killed in Jamaica so far this year."
These unlawful killings call for immediate and equal attention by both the human-rights lobby and the Government, just as extrajudicial killings of civilians by the State.
Often, civilians' families and friends seek accountability and justice for extrajudicial killings of loved ones.
But, what about good police constables who have been slain while serving their country? What about their families? Aside from the Government, who is there to stand up for their rights?
Therefore, Jamaica needs a more transparent, impartial and equal human-Rights advocates. Further-more, the current lobby appears only to cater to civilians, and should live up to its vision, as well as the hope, of all law-abiding Jamaicans to see "a Jamaica where the rights of all are ensured; where there is equal opportunity for citizens to realise their full potential and enjoy a sense of well-being; and where our culture is enhanced and respect shared".

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