Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of National Security, the Senator Matthew Samuda, says the ministry is reviewing procedural and technological strategies to strengthen its contraband prevention methods in light of reports of the importation and exportation of contraband within correctional facilities.
“I don’t know if there is a prison in the world that doesn’t have contraband issues. However, it’s an extreme issue in our local correctional facilities. As such, we are looking into procedural, technological and infrastructural changes that will address these issues,” said Senator Samuda.
The Senator made the revelation during an official visit to his assigned agencies in the ministry. These include the Department of Correctional Services (DCS), the Private Security Regulation Authority (PSRA) and the Jamaica Combined Cadet Force (JCCF).
“I’m pleased with the overall progress of the agencies. Although they’ve experienced some challenges during the COVID-19 period, they continue to push forward in their contribution to the overall security of Jamaica,” he said.
Minister Samuda lauded the PSRA for the “good work that they’ve done over the years.” He added that “although there is room for improvement, the PSRA has been successful in the regulation of the private security sector and the management of over twenty-four thousand (24,000) security guards.”
Concurrently, Samuda noted that the JCCF, which caters to youngsters aged 12 to 18 years, is an excellent mechanism for introducing discipline into communities through young people. The JCCF comprises five regiments and 16 battalions with over 16,800 Cadets in schools island-wide.