Fri | Sep 22, 2017

JLP says PNP decision against political debates is deceptive

Published:Friday | February 12, 2016 | 2:03 PM
Vaz ... plans were being put in place for the national political debates since July last year and the PNP had sufficient time to raise issues it feels could affect its participation.

Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) spokesman Daryl Vaz has accused the People's National Party (PNP) of being deceptive for opting out of the National Leadership Debates citing what the party calls spurious reasons.

According to Vaz, plans were being put in place for the national political debates since July last year and the People's National Party (PNP) had sufficient time to raise issues it feels could affect its participation. 

At a press conference today, Vaz told journalists that the two parties and the Jamaica Debates Commission signed a memorandum of understanding in November last year. 

He adds that outside of the issue over the format of the debates, the PNP did not raise any other concern in meetings involving all the parties since that time.

Vaz also read from communication between the parties which suggested that the PNP was initially prepared to sign an agreement on Monday but later shelved those plans and made demands of the Opposition Leader to address certain concerns before it participates. 

 

JLP spokesman Daryl Vaz

The JLP has confirmed its participation for the debates proposed for February 16, 18 and 20.

Meanwhile, the JLP says the position of the PNP on the national debates could be a carefully orchestrated strategy to ensure the party does not face the people of Jamaica.

In a statement, the party said it is not surprised even though it is severely concerned that the PNP is seeking to dodge the debates.

The JLP is urging Jamaicans to demand that the PNP participate in the debates saying they are critical to the political process.

According to the JLP, the PNP is afraid that the debates will expose its lack of real progress and plans to grow the economy and improve people’s lives.