Sat | Nov 18, 2017

Distrustful of Gov't over national ID

Published:Wednesday | November 15, 2017 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Let me join the thousands of informed Jamaicans against the National Identification System (NIDS) bill, either in part or in its entirety. Having or not having the NIDS is the least of our pressing problems. What about criminal-justice reform, impeachment legislation, enforcement of anti-corruption laws, and the link between money, power and crime.

Jamaicans have the propensity to produce and carry fake documents, from passports to driver's licences, birth certificates, marriage certificates, gun licences, and TRNs. Nowhere in the bill do I see any safeguard or sanctions for the production , distribution or possession of fake NIDs. The Government is rushing this piece of legislation as if it is the saviour to our many self-inflicted problems.

When you push an initiative down the throat of Jamaicans without sufficient consultation, especially when 87 per cent of them believe that those in authority are corrupt or have some corrupt motive, it leaves them to wonder if it is in their interest or the country's interest why it is being done.

There are some glaring clauses in the bill that clearly infringe on our human rights and other aspects of our freedom. Our prime minister was found by our constitutional court to have acted unconstitutionally, unlawfully and against public policy in the Senate saga. Our attorney general said that for crime to be solved, some of our human rights will have to be abridged.

FERNANDEZ SMITH

Former JLP Councillor

fgeesmith@yahoo.com