Jamaica Customs Delay Persist Amidst Pressure on Illegal Gun Imports

The delay of goods through the ports of Jamaica is said to be an effect of the country’s endeavours to put an end to corruption and the illegal importing of guns and other banned substances. Without giving too much information or explaining the continued delays, the JCA (Jamaica Customs Agency) disclosed that business is being performed normally, however, law enforcement has indicated that the delays are directly corelated to the gun trade operation currently in effect.

The disgruntled public, who rely on shipping companies to transport goods bought online, are raising their voices in protest over the delays they are experiencing with shipment. Multiple people from different shipping agencies have mentioned that after three months and counting, they have yet to receive their packages.

According to Nationwide, a customer of ITZ Shipd 24/7 (a company that involved lawyers when they were unable to conduct business) voiced that she was still waiting for an item that was ordered back in late August. Similar cases from the public have also been reported.

With the public outcry raising in volume, the JCA issued a statement via the Jamaica Information Service (JIS) to reassure the masses along with detailed measures to be taken to ensure the smooth clearance of packages. However, an email issued to the customers of ITZ Shipd noted that September and October shipments will soon become available. Although, packages from before this period may still be delayed further along with other company’s packages that just started clearance as stated by a Kingston wharf source.

According to the police, Customs has been active in trying to curb illegal imports and other types of smuggling that had used the loophole of skipping customs inspections to get their product into the country. It was disclosed by a stakeholder in the industry that this method has been employed on many occasions to smuggle items past customs checks.

Back in February, The Prime Minister had mentioned that as of 2022, there would be a crackdown on illegal gun trade and other illegal shipments (including drugs) into the island.

The 14-day gun amnesty that allows individuals to surrender any illegal guns in their possession without consequences began two days ago and will continue until November nineteen.

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