Wed | Aug 23, 2017

Is Parliament tracking Vision 2030 progress?

Published:Thursday | March 9, 2017 | 3:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

One responsibility a member of parliament (MP) has is to inform and educate his/her constituents of any central government policies that affect them, and to receive feedback to guide his/her own actions in carrying out legislative duty in Parliament.

I won't regret making the statement that most MPs across the political divide have failed in their responsibility in developing civic-minded constituents. Critical to governance is citizen participation and buy-in.

A clear example of this comes in the form of another report updating the public on Jamaica's National Development Plan (Vision 2030) that went under the radar with little, if any,

attention given to the nine-page document published January 2017. The Vision 2030 Implementation falls under the ultimate responsibility of Cabinet, which has reporting responsibility to Parliament, like so many reporting and accountability mechanisms in this country. This, too, has broken down.

The document that can be viewed on the Vision 2030 website states in bold highlight: "The progress reports represent the only space nationally that allows for the reporting on the overall development progress of Jamaica that is, social, economic, environmental and governance spheres of development."

Note the word, 'only'. Any policy document this crucial to national development and will affect policy decisions should be presented to the representative of the people for a debate on the four goals and 15 national outcomes.

The Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), media and United Nations have their share of culpability as the technical secretariat, the PIOJ, often holds press briefings to publicise its many reports on Jamaica. Why not Vision 2030 progress?

Where are the local media reports on communicating this to the public?

With the UN Multinational Sustainable Development Framework, the UN should compel the Government to give the goals the vitality they deserve and need.

Globally, there have been great efforts made to implement through youth-led initiatives and innovation.

Jamaica can benefit from galvanised youth energy around the goals.

Mario Boothe

m.raphael.b@gmail.com