So its as if Jamaica, is currently in purgatory – as in we are not quite in Hell, Heaven is still a pipe dream that not many are willing to access; but we are in a kind of no man’s land, where the Leaders and population alike are in limbo, waiting on the next corruption scandal, mass murder; or graphic and grisly murder of another child, to occur for us to spew the usual platitudes and condemnation, whilst doing precious little to solve, and or prevent these murders.
There’s a staleness to the life and quality of life here in Jamaica, that has robbed everyone of their joy; filled them with anxiety and a sense of foreboding, that does not auger well for mental wellness and or a nation on a path to self-fulfillment.
Some say it’s like the country is in Limbo, not vee-ing of vaw-ing, marking time as it were, simply because there’s nothing else to do. There are no personal or national challenges to stimulate the citizenry. No call to action; No international cause celebre with which Jamaicans identify, or one where the Government can take the lead and hope the people will follow. It’s really as if we have gone comatose as a Country.
According to one commentator, the staleness is real, as the problem is the people have outgrown the current crop of national leaders, many of whom, whilst still chronologically ‘young’, have been in the public eye for far too long, with no record of accomplishment, to their name despite being on the Public payroll for what seems like an eternity. Adding a certain heaviness to the atmosphere, which is consolidating the air of gloom, that permeates the very core of the country.
Jamaica is in dire need of a facelift! And Not just structural, as New Buildings or High-rises going up in the same old broken-down pothole-laden neighbourhoods, made that much more unsightly due to garbage strewn everywhere; and broken-down old car on every other corner; and with every newly constructed and curated gated community, bordered by an urban ghetto sprawl, showcasing the poverty and urban decline, as multi-colored pitchy-patchy zinc fence, that is an eyesore for some, and represents the highest expression of territorial conquest, whether as a squatter or a sub-lessee, of a lessee, who is a cousin twice removed from the original squatter.
So, as there appears to be a building boom; so too is the squalor. For all the talk about the construction industry boom and Millions of visitors occasioning a boom in Tourism, the talk on the street corners is that the money is not filtering down to the ‘small man’. Some posit that what appears to be a construction boom is long-term money laundering, in some cases. They also contend that all the talk of Visitors flocking to our hotels and beaches, there’s no data to show just how much of that dollar the Tourist spend, makes its way back into the Jamaican economy.
There’s a general feeling that despite all the upbeat talk, nutten-nuh-really-a gwaan, pon de ground’. As ‘Nuh money nah run, but prices keep on heading for the skies’. And then there is the issue of crime and police heavy-handedness, which compounds the problem of survival in the ghettos and lower-income communities.
Not that the problem is any different for higher-income communities and the near-do-well, as prices, crime, and shrinking economic opportunities, are equally front and center, of their concerns.
Which begs, the question: What kind of Change(s) the population thinks would or could bring about a positive change in the Country’s fortunes and by extension, that of the individual?
The people are unified that to bring about change, there must be a widespread and wholescale change in personnel, and not just in Government but right across the spectrum and especially in the public sector, as people have grown fatigued and wearied, fed-up of hearing the same names and seeing the same faces for the last umpteenth years.
Those The People Named Whose Departure They Say Would Bring About Meaningful Change: And the Country, is crying out for change, those who say otherwise are completely out of touch and are considered to be propping up the emperor and telling him how absolutely wonderful he looks in his new raiment ( Salary increase, Murder rates, disaffection, and all.
But the Prime Minister is in a dilemma as he is one of those heads the people are saying should roll, to bring about meaningful change…As are those of most of the senior people in his administration.
Whatever the Prime Minister does, one thing is certain, the People are no longer mesmerized by his promise of prosperity and or security and are yearning for a positive uptick, in their living conditions – As they want Change, and they want it now. And if he can’t deliver, then maybe he really has outlived his political usefulness….
Those Named, Whose Departure, is Thought Could Usher In Systemic Change:
15. NWA Spokesman: (Stephen Shaw); The NWA spokesman, was not identified by name but by his title, Seen as the harbinger of bad news, the Citizenry has grown tired of his pronouncements and wishes he would simply go away or remain quiet.
14. NWC Communications Manager: (Andrew Cannon), The principles applied to assessing the Spokesman from the NWA, were applied to the Spokesman from the NWC. The NWC Customers want a solution-oriented Spokesman instead of one just trotting out talking points, instead of providing answers to problems affecting the people.
13. Security Minister Horace Chang: Celebrated as the Most ineffective Minister of Government ever. to have served the Country. The consensus is, it makes a mockery of the claim by the Prime Minister and The Government when they say they are serious about taking the fight against crime to the criminals, when the Minister Of National Security’s Constituency, is a hot-bed and haven for scammers and Gang activities.
12.DPP Paula Llewellyn: This is one of the more recognizable names in the public space. Sadly for her, it does her no favour, as many question her capacity for fair and impartial rulings and cite the cases of Patrick Bailey and Amoi Issa, as evidence of her partiality. Dubbed The Silent Member Of The Cabinet”, by some, her Penchant For Grandstanding And Her Verbiage “wearies the soul”!
11. Police Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson: Is said to Serve no discernible purpose as Commissioner Of Police. And, it is said, his presence at the helm Of The JCF has served to demoralize Officer Corp and Rank And File Members.
10. Minister Daryl Vaz. His years in Politics have produced very little by way of a long and lasting legacy, of which the Country can be proud. He is better remembered for his association with a number of petty scandals that cause others to question his judgement.
9. MP James Robertson: Is the longest-serving elected member of the JLP’s executive. Interestingly,, the Current Prime Minister has sidelined him not just officially, by refusing to name him to a substantive Cabinet Post, but the Party apparatus has also sidelined him. Despite being the Party’s longest continuously serving Deputy Leader; and a winning Candidate, the Party, and The Government seemed to have relegated him to the sidelines. Now a bit shopworn after nearly 3-decades in public life. The political tide is shifting from under his feet.
8. MP Karl Samuda: His Tenure as MP has been described as ruinous, as Constituents complain that Red Hills Road, once the Hub of nightlife in the nation’s Capital, has been reduced to a ghost town by night and a sprawling eye-sore by day. Buffetted by Crimes such as Drive-by-shootings, Petty-theft; Extortionists, and Petty Crimes such as Purse-snatching and prostitution. Samuda’s departure from politics, some say, would be a blessing
7. Justice Minister Delroy Chuck: Most agree, that when he entered the political fray, they held him in very high esteem and hoped his intervention would have been for the better. Decades later, his early supporters now wring their hands in despair, as they regard his Ministerial tenure as lackluster; and his sojourn as MP, nothing short of a disaster! It is said, between him and Karl Samuda, their Constituencies hold the record for the most awful roads in the City, if not across the island.
6. Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie: Gets the sympathy vote of most as they say he was always trying to swim upstream. He is regarded as a failure, however, because of the filthy state of the Country’s capital, all other Parish Capitals, and Its towns and Villages.
5.Junior Minister Everald Warmington: Is said to be too uncouth for prime Time and His elected role as a Law-maker. His presence in the Parliament on the Government side flies in the face of the Government’s assertions that it is on the side of law and order.
4. Tourism Minister Ed Bartlett: Is a trifle shop-worn. Seems to have been around from back in the days of Methuselah. People have grown tired of him and his Numbers game, especially as those numbers are not reflected in their earnings, or in the Communities in which the resorts he brags about being Full, are based.
3. Governor General Sir Patrick Allen: His presence in “Kings; House”, is a rank reminder of the Colonial past and the atrocities the British meted out during their tenure as human traffickers and Slave-traders. His recent pay hike, a bill footed by the Jamaican Taxpayers, while he represents the English King, added salt to the colonial wound.
2. Opposition Leader Mark Golding: People see him as an obstruction in the path of an effective Opposition holding the Government accountable for its many missteps, corruption, and deteriorating lifestyle. Simply put, the People want Leadership, and they are not getting that from the Government, and they say the Opposition is Missing In Action, so Golding’s departure, would strengthen the Opposition and challenge the JLP’s hold on power.
And The Head Of The List: The People’s El Numero Uno; The Top of the List 1.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness: Until recently, maybe up until a year ago, Prime sinister Holness was seen as a possible part of the solution. Now he is seen as a part of the problem. Even though the Prime Minister and his handlers like to package him and sell him as ‘young, fresh and green’, the reality is that the Prime Minister has been in Politics and at the forefront for over 25 years. And with no major policy success and or initiative to his credit, The Prime Minister has overstayed his welcome, and some think his departure from the political scene, would be for the best, as he seems to have run out of answers.