POLICE, despite being branded as helpless and ineffective for failing to clear blocked roads in sections of West Kingston, say Tivoli Gardens is not untouchable.
“We understand the concerns. Tivoli Gardens is not untouchable but we are going to be strategic and we will not lose sight of the main objective,” a senior policeman told the Observer.
By main objective the cop meant the arrest of reputed Tivoli Gardens don, Christopher ‘Dudus’ Coke who has been wanted by United States authorities for gun and drugs running since August last year.
The decision to leave the barricades and avoid confrontation with armed thugs in the troubled enclave was deliberate, he said.
“Remember this is a war of wits. We could have gone in with superior force and remove them at the cost of all hell breaking loose. That is not the goal. We have to assess all angles and keep in focus where this whole thing started. The security forces know that they blockages were put up as a diversion to start chaos and switch our focus.”
The police are also maintaining that their reports of residents being held hostage and their cellular phones being confiscated by thugs are true despite denials by residents who marched through downtown, Kingston yesterday in support of Dudus.
“I am sure nobody in Jamaica believes that. Do you think 600 persons just went out and bought white shirt all by themselves? We are sticking with our guns,” the cop said.
Police are armed with a warrant to arrest Coke on sight but the placard-bearing protesters warned the authorities to leave their don alone as he was ‘next to God’.