'We need you Lord, we are between a rock and a hard place', says MP
It was not quite the call for divine intervention, but a Government Member of Parliament today made it clear, through prayers, that Jamaica requires the guiding hands of Almighty.
"We need You because we have not quite managed our affairs over these many years," said Dr Lynvale Bloomfield, the MP for East Portland, as he offered prayers at the start of today's Standing Finance Committee of the House of Representatives.
The committee, which is meeting over two days starting today, is reviewing the Estimates of Revenues and Expenditure as well as other fiscal document pertinent to the budgetary process.
Bloomfield, in his prayer, called for the presence of the Almighty saying, "We need You because we are between a rock and a hard place".
Jamaica is in the middle of a four-year Extended Fund Facility programme being administered by the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which, among other things, include the running of 7.5 per cent primary surplus.
The IMF has said that the target is ambitious by international standards, even as finance minister Dr Peter Phillips maintains that Jamaica is on track to achieve the targets outlined in the programme.
Phillips said that with revenues and grants expected to fall short by $10 billion this fiscal year, expenditure is to be reduced to $425 billion or by $14 billion in order to ensure Jamaica meets the primary surplus target.
Phillips said that it will be "challenging to meet not only the March 2015 target but also challenging to meet fiscal targets for 2015/2016."