Sun | Nov 18, 2018

Letter of the Day | PNP spin doctors can't whitewash Portia

Published:Friday | November 25, 2016 | 12:00 AM


The recent revelation by the political ombudsman, Donna Parchment Brown, that Opposition Leader Portia Simpson Miller acknowledged that the comments made in her address to party faithful in St Ann were regrettable is, indeed, welcome.

But there is a bigger picture to this whole affair that's of serious concern to, and has implications for, the political process. It regards the willingness of prominent party members to defend an obvious wrong, at all cost, in the interest of the party, despite glaring evidence to the contrary.

The comments made by Mrs Simpson Miller, which, contextually, could be construed by all who had viewed it on national TV as a threat to incite violence, has been criticised for, among other things, an awakening of a relic of our past - the kind of politics that has caused the death and dislocation of many because of their political affiliation.

To further exacerbate the situation, the videographer who filmed the event has reported that his life has been threatened by thugs who, evidently, are seeking to suppress press freedom. This is why such action should be seriously condemned and not be taken lightly.

In light of these recent developments, it is inconceivable that perceived persons of intelligence, such as Dr Dayton Campbell, who was recently on CVM TV, and Angela Brown Burke, who was on other media platforms, were seeking to spin the indefensible as a misinterpretation of their leader's statement, and, in the process, insulting the intelligence of the Jamaican people.

I am not at all surprised, though, at their responses, as both, in the recent past, have themselves been the subject of controversial statements for which we have not had an apology, and one would have thought they would have learnt from their missteps.

The fact that Mrs Simpson Miller has expressed remorse for her actions and has promised a statement on the issue is a welcome first step. I hope we will never have a recurrence of such outrageous behaviour.


Greater Portmore

St Catherine