'A heavy weight lifted' ... Michael Peart relieved to be leaving Parliament after 22 years
Daraine Luton, Senior Staff Reporter
Michael Peart, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, is today presiding over his last sitting and he has declared that he is relieved to be leaving Parliament after 22 years.
"A heavy weight has been lifted from my shoulders," said Peart when asked whether he will miss being Speaker of the House.
Peart was first elected in 1993 to represent South Manchester and was returned by the people in subsequent elections.
The departure of Peart brings to an end the dynasty in parliamentary representation built up by his family.
Before Michael, his father, Ernest Peart served as MP for North West Manchester.
Michael's brother, Dean served alongside him from 1997 to 2011 as MP for North West Manchester.
"No more Peart after this," he said even as his 13-year-old son, Matthew, turned up at Gordon House to see him for the first and last time in the role of Speaker.
The Parliament is to be dissolved on Friday to make way for the holding of general elections on February 25.
Other MPs who will not return to Parliament
Patrick Atkinson (North Trelawny),
Dr Ken Baugh (West Central St Catherine)
Damion Crawford (East Rural St Andrew)
Raymond Pryce (North East St Elizabeth)
D.K. Duncan (Eastern Hanover)
Lloyd B. Smith (Central St James)
Baugh, Duncan and Peart have retired from politics while internal selection processes have weeded out Crawford, Pryce, Atkinson and Smith.
Of the MPs who will certainly not return only Peart and Atkinson are present for today's last sitting of the House of Representatives.