Wed | Sep 19, 2018

We need patriots

Published:Wednesday | June 10, 2015 | 11:04 PM


Jamaicans are great admirers of our closest international partners, namely America, Britain and Canada. Those who have travelled or live in these countries boast about their first world infrastructure, their cutting edge technology, social amenities etc.

But how many of us have studied the history of these countries? They have been through wars, recessions, depressions, racial tensions to be where they are today. The people of these countries realised that in order for them to reach somewhere sacrifices will have to be made. Hard work would be needed, and prudent governments would have to be elected. The recent public sector wage demands have put the government in a spin. Police, teachers, doctors etc are all demanding their pound of flesh.

But in reality this government is broke. We have borrowed to solve our problems instead of producing. Five years of wage freeze was just a band aid on the problems facing the public sector. The government will have to tow the line of the IMF and reduce the cost or size of the Public Sector or face becoming a failed state. That's the reality facing Jamaica today.

The problems facing the public sector today were created by governments. For too long this sector has been used as a political rubber stamp, jobs and positions for those that sing from the same political hymn book, all at taxpayers' expense. Overlapping positions, bureaucratic layers have eaten up millions of tax dollars, without any meaningful contribution to nation building.

What Jamaica needs now are patriots: people at all levels putting the country first. In the same way our International partners have overcome their difficult past to have economies that are the envy of the world then we need to do the same.


Old Harbour.