Fri | Sep 20, 2019

Ja must grow

Published:Thursday | April 18, 2019 | 12:15 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

Responding to an article in Tuesday’s Gleaner by Patria-Kaye Aarons about privacy versus anonymity in relation to NIDS, I fully agree with the point that a national ID will allow all Jamaicans to be accountable to the State.

I respect the ruling of the court, but Jamaica has to reach that place in the 21th century where, if we want to become a first-world country very soon, we have to move in that direction with the rest of the first-world countries.

I am still for NIDS because it will help us as citizens feel safer and help the national security system database fight crime, protecting our borders and the people and inviting more investors, which will create more jobs.

Re the matter of privacy, it is not that the State will keep watch on you in your house. No, it will take your fingerprints and put them in the national security database so that when a crime is committed anywhere in the island, it will make it easier for the police to find the criminal.

I don’t believe any government would violate the rights and privacy of any citizen. I have lived in Jamaica for many years and I have seen government change over many periods, and all of them try to protect the rights of citizens.

Jamaica needs good governance and accountability. Look at when we have general elections and by-elections and people are voting in dead people’s names or persons who migrate. The system must be fixed or else we will lag behind. We don’t want by 2030 we are still many steps behind and not moving forward.

Too much corruption and mismanagement are taking place, both in public and private sectors, which will stunt our children, who need to grow up in a society where they can study and find meaningful opportunities after school. Some will become leaders, like the next prime minister or governor general, so Jamaica must move to that place sooner not later, where we are fully computerised with a centralised database system. May God bless and keep us.

ROBERT LEWARS

lewars72@yahoo.com

Member of a PTA committee