PRIME MINISTER HARRIS APPLAUDS SECURITY FORCES FOR A PEACEFUL AND SUCCESSFUL J’OUVERT 2019

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BASSETERRE, St. Kitts, December 27, 2019 (Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister) — Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, has commended the rank and file of the various security forces for their efforts in maintaining peace, law and order during Sugar Mas 48 events, particularly at the popular J’ouvert morning jam, which took place on Thursday, December 26.

Yesterday’s event, which is being hailed as one of the largest and most successful J’ouverts in years, saw a heavy presence from members of the Royal St. Christopher and Nevis Police Force (RSCNPF) and the St. Kitts and Nevis Defence Force (SKNDF).

While making a presentation at today’s (December 27) sitting of the National Assembly, under the section “Statement by Ministers” on the Order Paper, Prime Minister Harris noted that while the Christmas and Carnival seasons are the most hectic and challenging for the security forces, “they have responded so far with great enthusiasm and professionalism to the increased demands on their time.”

Yesterday, I’m advised by security officers that we had one of the largest crowds ever participating in our annual J’ouvert jam, which was marked by the high level of revelry and merriment which was palpable everywhere. We give thanks that there were no gun-related incidents reported by the police, and in particular there were few transgressions of the law or criminal incidents in general,” Prime Minister Harris said. 

In 2018, police made 64 arrests arising out of J’ouvert events. This year, a total of just 14 persons were arrested for disorderly conduct.

Figures from 2018 also indicate that the staff at the JNF General Hospital tended to 19 incidents associated with J’ouvert; three being gunshot wound cases and three related to persons who were injured by tractor(s). In 2019, only one person was reportedly injured by tractor while two individuals were treated for knife related injuries.

Prime Minister Harris further stated that J’ouvert 2019 will not only go down as a massive success for the large turnout of revellers and onlookers but also for being generally peaceful.

Everyone I interacted with yesterday complimented the Government, the security forces, the vulnerable and marginalized youths, for what has turned out to be an outstanding Carnival so far, rich in merriment and indeed memorable so far for the peace and tranquility,” the prime minister added. 

the Sugar Mas 48 festivities continue this weekend, Prime Minister Harris is encouraging patrons to continue to revel responsibly. He added, “We want to issue a note of caution to all persons that even as they revel in the merriment and the goodwill of the season that they consume alcohol in moderation, and better yet if they can avoid it.”