By NAN Contributor
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Weds. Oct. 24, 2018: Over three dozen children have been killed in just one Caribbean nation so far this year, as crime continues to be a scourge on the tourism paradise.
So far, nearly 40 children have been murdered in Jamaica in 2018, much to the stunned disbelief of human rights groups like, Hear The Children’s Cry and even one of the island’s junior government minister.
The most recent murder is that of a young teenage secondary school student. Law enforcement authorities said the mutilated body of 14-year-old Raven Wilson, a third form student of Ocho Rios High School in St Ann, was found in a plastic bag meters from her home on Sunday, three days after she had been reported missing.
Wilson’s death followed the killings of Shanoya Wray and Yetanya Francis, both 14, in Kingston last month. The body of Shanoya, 14, was found in a bathtub filled with corrosive chemicals in a house on Walley Close in Mona, St Andrew in July, five days after she was reported missing. And the body of Yetanya, 14, was found burnt and dumped at 85 West Road in Trench Town on August 24th, hours after she was reported missing.
“I am seriously disturbed by the killing of yet another promising young girl, whose life was cut short by cold and heartless criminals,” Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Floyd Green, said in a statement. “There is simply no justification for such cruelty against our children. The level of violence being meted out against them needs to stop, because it is robbing them of their right to life.”
He added that there seems to be a worrying trend in the recent spate of child murders with the perpetrators dismembering their victims.
Meanwhile, Hear The Children’s Cry is calling for the prosecution of persons involved in carrying out criminal acts on children, noting that is “double the usual gruesome annual statistic.”
“For two years now, Hear The Children’s Cry has been asking Prime Minister Andrew Holness to convene an Emergency Child Summit to take practical steps to protect the nation’s children and safeguard their lives,” the organization’s founder Betty Ann Blaine, said. “After meeting with me, the Prime Minister asked us to prepare a detailed proposal outlining the objectives and format of the Summit, which would call together all stakeholders to enact urgent solutions. The proposal was submitted to the Office of the Prime Minister in 2017 and yet month after month has gone by with no word from the country’s leader, despite our repeated calls for action from him.”
Jamaica has one of the highest per capita murder rates in the world. The latest crime statistics show that more than 1,000 people have been murdered in Jamaica since the start of the year.