Fri | Aug 23, 2019

Nomination of US Ambassador to Jamaica sent back to White House

Published:Tuesday | January 15, 2019 | 12:03 PM
Contributed photo

Jerome Reynolds, Assistant Editor - Online 

Jamaica will have to continue to wait longer before the appointment of a United States Ambassador.

The post has been vacant for a year and a half.

The nomination of Arizona businessman Donald R. Tapia has been sent back to the White House due to the absence of a decision by the US Senate.

Tapia's nomination was returned to President Donald Trump on January 3, 2019, under Senate Rule XXXI, Paragraph 6.

That clause stipulates that nominations that are pending when the Senate adjourns sine die or recesses for more than 30 days are returned to the President unless the Senate, by unanimous consent, waives the rule requiring their return.

The US Senate adjourned last December.

Tapia was nominated by President Trump last May and appeared before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that July where, among other things, he pledged that he would focus much of his attention on Jamaica's energy sector if he is named to the post.

At a meeting of the committee last August to consider pending ambassador nominations, the body voted to report favourably on the matter including Tapia's nomination.

However, the process was not completed before the adjournment of the Senate, resulting in the nomination falling off the agenda and subsequently returned to the White House.

Jamaica has been without a top US top diplomat since the departure of Luis Moreno in July 2017.

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