Wed | Jan 22, 2020

BBC World Questions comes to Kingston

Published:Friday | January 11, 2019 | 12:00 AM
Johnson Smith

The BBC World Service is holding a series of debates across the world led entirely by questions from the audience. BBC World Questions allows the public to question politicians, leaders and opinion formers directly, face to face.

On January 15, BBC World Questions comes to Kingston to host a debate on the country's political, social, and economic future and to find out what Jamaicans themselves have to say about world events.

Jamaica, with a population of about 2.8 million, has had an impact on culture and sport around the world. The University of the West Indies (UWI) is ranked in the world's top five per cent, and Jamaica's athletes regularly outperform countries more than 10 times its size. But economic development has been difficult, and crime and murder rates are high. Its traditional ties with Britain are often seen as a cause of frustration on the island.

Chairing the debate at the Spanish Court Hotel in Kingston, the BBC's Jonny Dymond will be joined by a panel of leading politicians and cultural figures who will be debating questions from the audience. The panel will include Senator Kamina Johnson Smith, minister of foreign affairs and foreign trade; Lorna Goodison, poet laureate; Alvin Wint, emeritus professor of international business at The UWI and board member of the Caribbean Policy Research Institute ; and Peter Bunting, former minister of national security.

Mary Hockaday, controller, BBC World Service English, said: "We are thrilled to bring our flagship debate programme to Jamaica. We've held BBC World Questions debates in dozens of cities around the world, and now, we're coming to Kingston to find out what issues people want to raise. International debate is at the heart of the BBC World Service, and this is a chance for people to put their questions directly to the panel in a discussion that will then be heard around the world."

BBC World Questions is an English-language event and will be recorded for radio broadcast worldwide.