Sun | Jan 21, 2018

Democracy is dead in the People’s National Party

Published:Thursday | December 15, 2016 | 12:20 AM


I'm disappointed in Peter Bunting, and every well-thinking Jamaican should be as well. He is making a huge mistake: the party delegates and the people of Jamaica need to have a robust, vibrant, and democratic leadership challenge that would allow democracy to be maintained. I'm not sure if we will be able to say a Peter Phillips ascendancy to the presidency of the People's National Party is a democratic one.

In our form of democratic system, a leader should not be appointed. Selection and not election is never the correct approach to the preservation of integrity in the democratic process. To the contrary, what selection does is that it brings in focus/questions the validity of the leader and his or her ability to lead. Not giving delegates and party members a platform to choose/question the potential leadership is a step in the wrong direction.

Now, knowing the history of our political framework, is it a possibility that Peter Bunting was forced to back out of the leadership challenges?

From the little I know about him, he doesn't strike me to be the type of person to back down from such a challenge. Additionally, after Buntings insightful rhetoric over the last eight months, I find rather strange that he would make an about turn. The following questions must be asked: is he saying that all of a sudden he has become politically bankrupt and not able to lead the party?

Is it insecurity? Is he saying that he honestly believes Peter Phillips is the best candidate for the job? And if so, where was that thinking one month ago? Can Peter Phillips defeat a young and vibrant Andrew Holness in a general election?

The Jamaican people are rapidly moving towards youthful leadership. Conventional trends strongly indicate that five years from now the electorate will be more politically educated, which will lead to a great influx of young people in the political framework. To young people like myself, Dr. Phillips will represent the dinosaur generation. I would caution Peter Bunting on walking away from this challenge and take a more pragmatic approach to this leadership race. Our young people are watching keenly!

Kenyatta Montgomery