|PNP Region 3 condemns Central Kgn violence, apologises to Southside residents
Thursday, September 19, 2002
THE People's National Party's (PNP's) powerful Region Three Tuesday condemned last weekend's violence in Central Kingston and apologised to the residents of Southside, even though it said the party did not have a hand in the shootings.
"The Region, based on its own preliminary investigations and information received from the police, is both alarmed and embarrassed that a criminal gang out of McIntyre, in East Kingston, and a community strongly supportive of the People's National Party is strongly believed to have carried out that initial violent attack," a statement from the region, which encompasses the majority of the Corporate Area, said.
Two men were killed and at least 14 persons injured in what residents have described as gang violence in the area. The drive-by shootings took place at Stephen Lane on Tower Street in Southside, Central Kingston, and then on Wildman Street.
"Although the People's National Party as an organisation has absolutely nothing to do with the conflict or the attack, which is gang related, the region nevertheless expresses its deep regrets to the families of victims and sincerely apologises to the Southside residents," the group said.
It also urged the East Kingston and Port Royal constituency, and the residents of the McIntyre community to totally disassociate themselves from the group of men that it described as "criminal" and violent-minded", regardless of past friendships and family relations.
"This same group has, for a long time, had the community in conflict and at risk, with their 'off and on' criminal agenda," the Region Three statement said, adding that the men are suspected of killing three other men from the wider community three weeks ago.
It rejected as "narrow rationalisation" the thought that because a man from the McIntyre community was shot some weeks ago in Southside, that any group has the right to take the law into their own hands and retaliate.
"We fully congratulate the police on their quick action in recovering two weapons and holding two suspects," the Region Three statement said. "The other suspects must now be relentlessly pursued, apprehended and brought to justice."
The region also condemned "the group suspected by the police to be from Southside, who carried out a retaliatory attack against the residents of Spoilers in the Wildman Street area, an innocent community which played absolutely no part in Saturday night's attack against Southside. They, too, must also be relentlessly pursued, apprehended and brought to justice."