Mon | Aug 20, 2018

Taken out of context on Holness

Published:Wednesday | March 1, 2017 | 12:00 AM


Your reporter's account of his telephone interview with me, as conveyed in Tuesday's edition of your paper (28/2/17), is quite unfair to me and to Jamaicans for Justice (JFJ).

Unfair to me because the grade of nine that I gave to PM Holness was explicitly limited to his willingness to listen to, and take into account, the views of

civil society, and I think I referred in particular to the environment.

In that regard, any grade would be provisional (and this should have been made explicit and drawn a lower mark) since, as far as I am aware, the PM's statements on China's plan for using coal at Alpart and for a large engineering plant at Goat Islands clearly show him to be not taking a fixed and final position.

Furthermore, I pointed to the negative feature of tribal politics in the $600m given to bush-clearing last year. Thus, the conclusion can be made that your reporter has given a carefully unbalanced picture of what I actually said.

The account in your paper is also unfair to Jamaicans for Justice. It has given the impression to the public that the organisation is taking a general position in support of the Jamaica Labour Party. This entirely contradicts the considered posture of JFJ and of other civil-society organisations over many years. It is one of not siding with any political party, but of trying to work with whichever party is elected to govern the country. I am very conscious of this policy and had no intention whatever of seeking to alter it.