Human Rights Groups Express Concern After Capital Punishment Issue is Raised
Human rights groups, Stand Up for Jamaica, and Jamaicans for Justice are expressing concern after National Security Minister, Robert Montague recently raised the issue of Capital Punishment in Jamaica.
The Security Minister said he had asked his junior minister to consult with a number of agencies including the Attorney General’s Office to determine if there are any legal impediments to the resumption of hanging in Jamaica.
Speaking recently Mr Montague said among other things that persons who intend to break the law must know that punishment will be sure, swift and just.
The minister’s comments have not received favorable responses from several groups.
Executive Director, for stand up for Jamaica, Maria Carla Gullotta says while there is a need for strong message about the handle on crime, the Security Minister could have been more prudent in making his comments about the resumption of hanging.
She adds that the death penalty is not the solution to the crime problem affecting Jamaica.
In the meantime Chairman of Jamaicans for Justice, Horace Levy says more thought needs to be given to the move of reviving the practice of capital punishment in Jamaica.
He says there should be a moratorium on carrying out the death penalty, given the state of the justice system.
Mr Levy adds that there is evidence that capital punishment is not an effective deterrent to crime.
He says that several countries and states in the United States, which continue to practice capital punishment, still have very high rates of violent crimes.
He says instead of reviving an inhumane and ineffective practice, government should focus on fast tracking the critical reforms needed in the justice and law enforcement systems.