St. Thomas police investigating fight involving JLP and PNP supporters
The St. Thomas police are investigating an incident in Springfield where supporters of Jamaica’s two main political parties were engaged in a fight, yesterday.
The incident, which was captured on camera, comes as campaigning continues ahead of the local government polls slated for February 26.
The video being circulated on social media, shows a man dressed in green, the traditional colour of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and a man clad in orange – the People’s National Party (PNP) standard colour engaged in an altercation.
Further in the video, another man dressed in black, can be seen attacking the JLP supporter, who then pulled what appears to be a firearm and pointed it at the alleged PNP supporter.
The man dressed in orange is then accosted by two other men.
When contacted this morning, head of the St. Thomas police, Superintendent Allison Byfield confirmed that lawmen are aware of the incident.
She said a report was made to the police and an investigation is underway.
Meanwhile, Mayor of Morant Bay and candidate for the White Horses division, the PNP’s Hubert Williams has called a press conference for this afternoon to address the incident.
A release from the opposition said the briefing aims to shed light on the incident, its implications for community safety, and the actions being taken to ensure a fair and secure electoral process in St. Thomas.
Mayor Williams claimed the incident was not isolated, as previous meetings of the PNP have allegedly been disrupted by supporters of the JLP.
He urged PNP supporters to be calm.
Meantime, Opposition Spokesman on Citizen Security Peter Buntings wants the police to investigate the matters, swiftly. He said such behaviour undermines citizen’s democratic values.
Mr. Bunting is also urging all political actors to prioritize a peaceful electoral process.
And one of the men involved in the altercation in the first half of the video has been identified as Councillor Candidate for the Trinityville division in Western St. Thomas, Dean Jones. He was identified by his attorney, Alexander Shaw.
In a statement this morning, Mr. Shaw confirmed that the incident happened yesterday, February 5, while Jones was conducting his lawful business.
The release claimed Mr. Jones was physically attacked by persons unknown to him, causing him to sustain serious injuries and be placed in imminent fear for his life.
It stated further that jones took defensive action to de-escalate the situation and later reported the matter to the St. Thomas police who are carrying out an investigation.
The attorney said the encounter was very traumatic for his client, and against that background he is urging the public not only to respect his privacy, but also to resist any attempt to politicize the matter.