Sat | Jan 20, 2018

Letter of the Day | Good knock, Portia, but time to retire hurt

Published:Wednesday | July 27, 2016 | 12:00 AM


Portia Simpson Miller is one of the most successful politicians Jamaica has produced. Her success has been recognised not only nationally, but internationally. Indeed, in 2012, Time Magazine ranked Mrs Simpson Miller among its 100 most influential persons in the world. That is some recognition that we should all join Mrs Simpson Miller in celebrating.

Portia has served in a number of ministries, and there is no doubt that she has been successful and has been an outstanding achiever in all the ministries she has served. She served in the Ministry of Labour, and she will be remembered for the calm and conciliatory, approach she took towards employers and employee during her stint. In consequence of her approach, there was a lessening of industrial disputes during her tenure. She made effort, too, to use the legislative process for the benefit of workers, especially women and domestic workers.

Then we are all aware of the pride with which Sista P went about continuing the development of a modern highway network for the country. The North-South Highway from Ferry to Mammee Bay is also a project that the authorities should look at to be named in her honour.

Mrs Simpson Miller is now 70 years old, and should the JLP serve its full term of five years, she will be 75 at the next general election. Why, at 76, would Mrs Simpson Miller desire to take on the awesome responsibility of prime minister of Jamaica is a puzzle to a number of us.

Jamaica is a difficult country to manage. It has serious challenges with a high crime rate, indiscipline, corruption and an economy that just will not grow despite a multiplicity of promises by a multiplicity of politicians.

Mrs Simpson Miller has made her contribution to the country. She should accept this and move on.




She should have resigned immediately after the results of the last election in which her party lost the seat of government. She should not wait until she is pressured to resign. She should now resign and give the party an opportunity to select a new leader and prepare itself for future elections under new leadership.

There is no one on earth who is indispensable. This Mrs Portia Simpson Miller must accept.

The call for Mrs Simpson Miller to resign should be seen by her not as an act of betrayal against her or an accusation of failure. Instead, she should see this as an acknowledgement of her outstanding contribution and an acceptance that she would now be allowed to enjoy a period of retirement in peace, quiet and pleasantness.

Take the advice, Sista P. It is the way to go.


Ocho Rios, St Ann