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Hylton raps private sector for shunning innercity

Published:Friday | November 14, 2014 | 12:00 AMChristopher Serju

MINISTER OF Industry, Investment and Commerce Anthony Hylton has challenged business people to start investing in inner-city communities such as Waterhouse, which falls within the Western St Andrew constituency for which he is member of parliament.

"Communities like these, our traditional private sector has really shunned them. They're not present there because of all kinds of concerns - some real, some imagined, but they're not part of these communities," he told Wednesday's Gas Pro Street Style Cook-Up media launch at the Marie Atkins Basic School in Waterhouse, St Andrew.

Sustainable partnerships

Speaking to the issue of

sustainable partnerships for development, the investment minister lamented that, for too long, residents of inner-city communities have had to journey too far beyond their home base to spend hard-earned money on products sold

by these companies with which they have no other

linkage. It's a situation he thinks must change for the

betterment of the country.

"If we hope to grow our

economy, if we hope to generate stability and to realise the goal of integration of our community and the sustainability of these

businesses, they have to do more, they have to reach out and they have to engage," he appealed.

Four-team cook-off

The build-up to the Saturday, November 29 finals of the cook-off, which will take place along West Bay Farm Road when four teams comprised of three members each will compete for top prize of a six-burner gas stove, second prize of a five-cubic feet deep freeze, and third place copping a mix of appliances, will see eliminations starting in the community today.

This is the second in the Gas Pro Street Style Cook-Up competition, a community-based integration programme geared towards the empowerment and social development of residents and microenterprises, centred on the showcasing of their culinary skills. It is endorsed by the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ), consistent as it is the aim of its Community Renewal Programme, for which social transformation in the most vulnerable areas is a priority.

christopher.serju@gleanerjm.com