'We want Adams' - polls say people want ex-lawman for commissioner

January 12, 2017
Reneto Adams

Since Dr Carl Williams resigned from his post as Commissioner of Police, many Jamaicans have been calling for controversial retired crime fighter Reneto Adams to take the reins, as they believe he is the only one equipped to tackle the island's crime problems.

Multiple online polls and surveys that questioned who should replace Williams came back with resounding support for Adams, who retired from the force at the rank of senior superintendent at age 63.

One poll was shared in a Facebook group called Voice for Jamaica, which facilitates discourse on Jamaica's development.

It listed four persons deemed likely candidates for the job and asked who among them should land the role.

The suggested candidates were deputy commissioner of police Novelette Grant, who is acting as commissioner for 90 days; former deputy commissioner of police Mark Shields; senior superintendent of police, Steve McGregor; deputy commissioner of police, Glenmore Hinds; and Adams.

Eighty-eight per cent of the respondents voted for Adams. On another poll posted in a group called All People from St Elizabeth, which queried whether Adams should be the next commissioner, 73 per cent voted yes.

Some even gave their reasons for calling Adams out of retirement to take up the top post.

"Adams a di big deal. Nobody else can manage di roaches dem, come spray out dem dutty (expletive)," one respondent said.

Another added, "Let the lion Adams fight the dragon crime."


Marred past


However, not everyone supports Adams, pointing to his leadership of the now defunct Crime Management Unit.

Executive Director of Jamaicans for Justice, Horace Levy, said he doubts the government would seriously consider Adams, and encouraged those calling for him to examine his marred past.

"That would be a terrible choice. He is associated with the Kraal [Clarendon] and Braeton [St Catherine] killings. He had to go to court for those. He got off, but not everybody was convinced," he said. Levy also mentioned an "attempted assault on Tivoli Gardens" in which 26 people died in 2001.

"He would be a terrible choice. He is popular with some people, but very unpopular with people like me, and I'm not an isolated case," Levy asserted.

In December last year, Adams told THE STAR that he would consider offering himself up for the post if the various stakeholders were so mindful.

Several calls to Adams for comment went unanswered.

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