Women, kids protest against female killings
Although school was in session yesterday, several children joined a group of placard bearing women who took to the National Heroes Circle in Kingston to protest against the recent upsurge of violence against their peers.
The protesting parents, who took to the streets from as early as 6:30 a.m., said their children are traumatised and afraid to attend school in light of the number of women and children being killed.
Eleven-year-old Etana Walker, who attends the Central Branch All-Age School, was among the frustrated demonstrators.
"When me a come from school the other day, a man call to me and say me must come to him. Me ask, 'why me must come to you?' and him still a say me must come, so then me start run. I don't know him, so me did feel scared," she told THE STAR.
Etana added that she has been left frightened after seeing the mutilated body of 14-year-old Roshane Smith, who was executed and dumped in a rubbish heap near her home along the National Heroes Circle less than two weeks ago.
Her mother Adeen Smith said she will have to start accompanying Etana to school to ensure her safety. Smith, who also has four other children, ages 12, 14, 16 and 17, said she is worried sick about them and is calling on Prime Minister Andrew Holness to address the nation with a plan to combat the situation.
"Andrew Holness need fi talk about this kidnapping, the killing of the girls, and the abduction. Start check fi we. Do something before something do we. Mi pickney dem nuh want to go to school. Dem fraid," she lamented.
Another angered mother, Cidesha Phillips, said the callous ordeals are creeping closer home, so action must be taken.
"My daughter is six years old, attending the Allman Town Primary School. Last night, they tried to abduct a girl on my daughter's school road, and she run and dig out the whole of her foot. It's very near to us. It's here," she said.
She said her daughter is aware of what is happening, and she has expressed that she is scared to go to school.
"Mi still send her to school, but I'm very worried. I also have nieces, aunties, and friends, and when I hear about these things happening to our women, these things are just frightening and irritable to every mother," she said.
The group of protesters started with about 46 women and children. They said they are committed to protesting and might even become more aggressive until their voices are heard.
"We have a dozen tyres and old fridge. We might have to go block the road and burn them until him [Andrew Holness] come and address the situation," Smith warned.