More CCTV Coming to Manchester: Was Joe Issa’s Call Heeded

On the heels of lamenting the lack of closed-circuit television (CCTV) on the island, Joe Issa has hailed a move to bring more of the surveillance cameras to the bustling trade districts of Mandeville and Montego Bay.

According to a Gleaner article, more cameras are to be installed in the town of Mandeville, Manchester and the country’s second city Montego Bay in St James, this year. It said the number of cameras serving the towns will go up by 50 per cent, in a move to shore up police monitoring and public safety and security.’

Joseph “Joey” Issa Founder Cool Group of Companies

Issa has congratulated Head of the Modernization Initiatives and Strategic Projects Division in the Ministry of National Security, Dr Canute Thompson, noting that it is his dream that one day every busy street, transport center and open space throughout the island will be equipped with CCTV.

In hailing the collaboration of the Management Institute for National Development (MIND) and the government minister in executing the project, Issa says it is a mandate of the new prime minister that the various ministries and public bodies partner with the private sector to move the country forward.

Like Issa, Thompson believes that CCTV is crucial in deterring criminals and supporting the investigation of crime. His views further mirrors Issa’s when he was quoted in the article as saying, “when people know that an area is monitored by CCTV, there is a stronger likelihood that they will conduct themselves in a manner that is law-abiding.”

Dr Canute Thompson

For his part, Issa, in an earlier interview put it this way: “With the law in place to permit the use of CCTV tapes as evidence in a court of law, many more criminals and traffic offenders will have their day in court. Also, the thought of their every move being recorded may be sufficient to cause criminals to think twice before breaking the law.”

Issa said he doesn’t buy the argument that CCTV violates people’s privacy. The way he sees it is that “the cameras protect people by keeping an eye on them as they legitimately go about their daily lives,” and that “if you don’t have anything to hide why worry…in fact, you should feel safer with CCTV.”

The executive chairman of Cool Corporation is also pleased to hear that through partnership with the Christiana Business Watch Group and the government, CCTV systems are also coming to Christiana in Manchester, this year.

Issa, in his civic leadership capacity as President of the St. Ann Chamber of Commerce famously executed an initiative to restore the St. James Avenue area in Ocho Rios to its bright, fun ambience, by encouraging several business owners to improve the look of their previously run-down properties and installing CCTV.