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West Central St James on the move - Ffolkes Abrahams

Published:Friday | September 18, 2015 | 9:00 AM
Sharon Ffolkes-Abrahams

West Central St James, which has been described by its member of parliament as one of the fastest-growing areas in the Caribbean, is set to see several developments in the near future, chief among them being 500 housing units and an Olympic-size swimming pool.

"Barnett Park plans to invest US$5 million to provide 500 dormitories by June 2016. This will open access to cheaper housing to the typical BPO (business process outsourcing) employee, who falls within the 19 to 30 age range," the West Central St James MP said.

Sharon Ffolkes-Abrahams also said Gore Development should begin the construction of 1,300 houses on the Bellefield Estate shortly.

The first-time MP told parliamentarians on Wednesday that the policies of the People's National Party (PNP) Government are contributing to significant growth in her constituency.

West Central St James is comprised of areas such as Granville, Retirement, Mount Salem and Spring Gardens.

She pointed to the BPO sector, allied services such as banking and insurance, as well as tourism, as being key drivers of economic activities in West Central St James.

BPOPUSH

Ffolkes-Abrahams said the Government is pushing ahead with plans to construct 63,000 square feet of space in the Montego Bay Free Zone for the expansion of the BPO sector.

The MP added that some $600 million is to be spent over the next five years to transform sections of the constituency under the Integrated Community Development Programme being implemented by the Jamaica Social Investment Fund.

She told legislators that in addition to getting a campus of the Caribbean Maritime Institute established in western Jamaica to help prepare persons for logistics and supply-chain operations, her tenure has seen significant attention being paid to education.

For instance, Ffolkes-Abrahams said some 2,000 persons have benefited from scholarships, tuition bursaries, book and uniform grants.

Pointing to several instances of academic success among her constituents, Ffolkes-Abrahams said one person "states that she was a scammer but is now a trained chef through one of

my programmes from my Constituency Development Fund.

"She now works as a chef at one at the major hotels in Montego Bay ... . This is progress," she added.

daraine.luton@gleanerjm.com