Mon | Aug 20, 2018

Phillips, PM a disaster for Jamaica?

Published:Saturday | June 27, 2015 | 12:00 AM


According to the recent Gallup-Healthways State of Global Well-Being Report, Jamaica ranks 115th out of 145 countries, placing it lower than Haiti and at the bottom in the Caribbean in relation to its perception of its financial well-being.

When, as revealed in the infamous WikiLeaks cable of July 8, 2008, a United States diplomat alleged that Peter Phillips, in discussion with a US Embassy official, said Jamaica risked becoming the "English-speaking Haiti" if Portia Simpson Miller, whom he deemed a "disaster" for Jamaica, was returned to government, not many of us probably took him seriously.

Many of us might have dismissed those accusations as sour grapes, given Peter Phillips' two failed attempts at securing the leadership of the People's National Party (PNP), with Simpson Miller triumphing on both such occasions.

However, given the very state of our economic affairs, ironically now being managed largely by Phillips under the leadership of Simpson Miller, one has to wonder now if Phillips was not very much spot on then.

As highlighted by the Gallup-Healthways report and evidenced otherwise, while Haiti is improving, our middle class is now largely extinct and the gap between the rich and the poor is among the highest, if not the highest, in the world.


Economic refugees


Our people continue to struggle financially, with many finding it increasingly difficult to meet their basic needs. More and more of our people are becoming economic refugees, having lost all hope in Jamaica, as they, more than ever before, seek out other lands for better opportunities for survival.

Our country is struggling to recover from the economic misery facilitated largely by the People's National Party (PNP), as allegedly stated by Phillips via WikiLeaks, "running the country into the ground for the 18 years" they formed the Government prior to the Jamaica Labour Party's election thereto in 2007.

Can the PNP, led by Simpson Miller with Phillips as a major player, be expected to save us economically, especially when the PNP was never known to be a good steward of the country's financial affairs?