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PNP a breeding ground for non-performers - McKenzie slams Opposition party for state of local government

Published:Sunday | November 6, 2016 | 12:00 AMRomario Scott
Scores of Labourites came out on Sunday to support Jodian Myrie.
Chairman of the JLP's Area Council One Winston Ennis embraces Jodian Myrie.
Desmond McKenzie

With music from renowned reggae and dancehall icon Buju Banton pelting from a huge sound system set up and in the presence of scores of Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) officials and supporters, daughter of the Gargamel himself, Jodian Myrie, was on Sunday given a ringing endorsement from the party's deputy leader for Area Council One Desmond McKenzie.

"We are proud that Jodian Myrie has decided to come forward under the banner of the this great Jamaica Labour Party," McKenzie said, as Destiny, one of Banton's hit songs, echoed on the grounds of the Tarrant High School in the Hagley Park division of East Central St Andrew.

The deputy leader told the cheering JLP supporters at the rally that the division is a must win for the JLP.

He said Banton must be proud that his daughter is donning the 'prosperity' colours and has chosen to offer herself to represent the people of the Hagley Park division.

McKenzie, who is a also the local government and community development minister, told supporters that they had a responsibility to "do the right thing on election day" by booting the PNP from office.

"We have a one-seat majority and the PNP running off them mouth, talking about a lucky wi lucky. We took 11 seats from them [and] they didn't take one of the 21 that we had," an animated McKenzie told supporters.

Though acknowledging the PNP's majority in the municipal corporations across the country, McKenzie vowed that there would be a reversal of that majority come the night of November 28 when the ballots have been counted.




"When we take control of not just the Kingston and St Andrew Corporation (KSAC), but a majority of the municipal corporations across the country, we are going to return stability; we are going to return integrity; we are going to return accountability; we are going to be a government of transparency. That is what is lacking now at the level of local government," McKenzie told Labourites.

The former mayor of Kingston also knocked the opposition People's National Party (PNP) for wanting to campaign on the promises that have not yet been fulfilled by the 10-month old JLP administration.

Questioned McKenzie: "What about the four years of their stewardship of local government?"

"It is because there is nothing to talk about," he retorted, adding that people have lost respect for the system of local government under the PNP administration.

He slammed those councillors who he said knew nothing more about their job other than to "move motions to clean drains and to do bushing".

"We want to get rid of these non-performing PNP councillors and PNP mayors that have destroyed local government," he said, while urging the JLP candidates that they must "know the needs of the people they represent".

In the meantime, the JLP will be seeking to go into overdrive in a matter of days as the party seeks to wrestle the municipal corporations from the PNP.

The party is scheduled to have its annual conference at the National Arena in Kingston on November 20, but will on Sunday stage a number of conferences across its four area councils to gather momentum for the conference.