Office of the National Security Advisor (ONSA)
THE OFFICE OF THE NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR (ONSA)
On 1 December 2016, the Office of the National Security Advisor (ONSA) became effective by decision of Cabinet, creating the post of National Security Advisor and absorbing the National Security Policy Coordination Unit (NSPCU).
The work of the office is inter-ministerial and inter-sectoral in scope which, being located within the Office of the Cabinet, allows the National Security Advisor to:
- Advise the Prime Minister and National Security Council on security, intelligence and defence matters;
- Provide coordination across the country’s security operations;
- Act as principal channel of communication between the government and the intelligence community on issues that concern the community as a whole;
- Act as a focal point for liaison with central intelligence authorities in other countries including Commonwealth countries;
- Monitor the implementation and update of the National Security Policy.
Tailored for Jamaica’s National Security
The form and structure of the ONSA is tailored to suit Jamaica’s security environment, in light of the current security threats and economic realities, and will improve Jamaica’s capacity to identify and prioritize threats to national security, and support strategic policy development. The head of ONSA reports to the Prime Minister and is providing analysis and recommendations on:
- Current and perceived threats to national security and public order and safety;
- Strategic operations on national security in strategic and crisis situations;
- Implementation and updates on national security policy;
- Ethical and legal issues across security communities including cyber security;
- Recovery from emergencies.
The unit undertakes the day-to-day coordination and monitoring of the implementation of the policy, in addition to driving the transformation process on behalf of the National Secuirty Council (NSC).
Functions under the National Security Policy of Jamaica
- Convene joint meetings to confirm responsibilities, actions and timelines as required by the National Security Policy (NSP).
- Develop a full process-monitoring mechanism to allow for the ready identification of actions required responsibilities, and the meeting of deadlines by relevant organisations.
- Monitor the progress of implementation actions. This will include confirming, where necessary, that the required stuctures, policies, infrastructure, personnel and equipment are in place.
- Evaluate the implementation of the NSP and verify that the actions being carried out remain on track to meet the strategic security goals and objectives. The indicators of progress will be developed, as necessary. This will include sector performance targets.
- Regularly report on the progress of the implementation process to the NSC.
- Resolve conflicts that arise during the course of implementation as departments and agencies seek to coordinate their actions.
- Monitor the coordinaton of actions as directed by the NSC.
- Do continuous review of the NSP and annually report to the NSC.
- Formalise written reporting systems, visits and consultations.
- Convene special meetings with key stakeholders, as necessary.
NSPCU Newsletter - Security ConnectAugust 2016
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