No-good parents are no-good Comrades too, says Thwaites
A senior member of the governing People's National Party (PNP) has said parents who do not take responsibility for their children should not be considered good Comrades.
Ronald Thwaites, the Member of Parliament for Central Kingston and Minister of Education, made the comment in a face to face forum involving top functionaries of the party and residents of Kingston and St Andrew at Campion College Thursday night.
"I hope I don't get myself in trouble for saying this but you cannot be a good PNP if you don't take care of your children," Thwaites said.
He was responding to a question from a woman who wanted to know whether the government would keep the tuition-free policy at the secondary level, especially in light of the fact that many single mothers have more than one child in high school and may not be able to afford tuition fees.
Thwaites said no child should be excluded from school because the tuition is not paid.
He said too that it is critical parents work harmoniously to ensure that the needs of their children are attend to.
"Single mothers with children are blessed people. Many of us have been raised by single mothers and granny. And God will bless you. But it's not so it must go. I only know of one immaculate conception. When people come to you and say there is no father, it is not true," Thwaites said.
In addition to lashing absentee fathers, Thwaites said " if you are a woman and you so wicked that you run the man and you mek the children suffer, yuh nuh good neither."
"We cannot live this way, Comrades," he charged.
"PNP is a morals party and we need to understand how fundamental choices are. How wonderful faithful relationships are, in order to bring up the next generation," Thwaites said.
Meanwhile, National Security Minister, Peter Bunting, said that there is a plethora of research that have concluded that children with absentee fathers end up being worst off than their peers.
He said that the ministry has started a parenting campaign out of a recognition that dealing with crime requires tackling root causes such as poor parenting rather than the symptoms.