Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Letter of the Day: My vote up for grabs, whenever ...

Published:Friday | February 12, 2016 | 2:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

A recent article in your newspaper highlighted the fact that many of us Jamaicans would be willing to sell our right to vote to one or other of our political parties in exchange for hard cash.

Well, my vote is up for grabs, whenever ... :

1. Members of parliament (MPs) are required to reside [and not merely own property] in the constituency which they wish to represent. Real representation will only be made when one experiences the real needs of people.

2. A political party shows the willingness to enact legislation whereby the ministers of government are selected, not merely because they have been elected to represent a constituency, but because they have the knowledge and expertise in the area over which they have been asked to govern. Duh?! Some of those who have acted in these positions do not know 'one blast' about their area of governance and we, therefore, are required to pay hefty consultation fees to others who are employed to think for them! This can only be accomplished when we embrace a system of government that separates the offices of MPs from ministers of government.

3. A political party shows the willingness to enact legislation that ensures that any person representing us in Parliament or who holds a ministerial position, and who is found guilty of making decisions, awarding contracts, mishandling funds, shall be dishonourably discharged, sentenced in an appropriate manner and be banned from ever returning to any position of national leadership in the future.

I somehow would not hold my breath in anticipating that any one of the above whenevers will be forthcoming shortly. I do not believe that any of our current crop of leaders, on either side of the political divide, have either the guts or the balls to push for such drastic changes, as this would not only severely restrict the power they so dearly desire and to which they so tenaciously cling when once attained, but also reduce the ability to avail themselves of ill-gotten gain.

For now, therefore, my finger will not be painted, either by legitimate nor illegitimate means, and my vote is up for grabs, whenever ... .

JOHN ROYES

Medical Doctor

94 1/4 Old Hope Road