Derrick A. Scott, Gleaner Writer
LEADERSHIP ASPIRANT in the People's National Party (PNP) Portia Simpson Miller will officially kick-off her campaign on July 17, Richard Azan, a member of her campaign team announced during a tour of North America.
Mrs. Simpson Miller's campaign spokesman has invited Jamaicans residing in the United States to come home for the special occasion.
"I have the ability, experience, compassion and the heart to unite Jamaica," Simpson Miller, PNP vice-president and Minister of Local Government, Community Development and Sports, told over 200 Jamaicans at a reception held in her honour in Georgia. The function was hosted by former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young and his wife Caroline on Sunday.
ON TOUR OF UNITED STATES
Minister Simpson Miller is on a U.S. tour to seek support from Jamaicans overseas for her bid to become Jamaica's first woman Prime Minister and president of the People's National Party.
She told the gathering that Jamaica at this time needs the "nurturing hands of a woman," and she is stepping forward to provide that leadership.
Minister Simpson Miller said she had the combined strength, courage and determination inherited from great prime ministers like Sir Alexander Bustamante, the charisma and charm and love for the workers and the poor like Michael Manely and the kindness and generosity of Hugh Shearer and the quiet dignity of P.J. Patterson and the toughness of Eddie Seaga.
"If you can find all of those qualities in one person, then I don't see how Jamaican's can find another candidate that will be able to beat this one."
Mrs. Simpson Miller said she has a strong vision for Jamaica becoming a country of peace, love, harmony and prosperity.
"We will work for the economic development and growth of our country where communities will flourish and families will be stable, where we can create an environment where all our people will have access to health care, and the children of the poor will have access to quality education and the children of the inner cities will face only the barriers in their minds. Those minds will be liberated to think big, dream big and to achieve.
Minister Simpson Miller said her immediate task if she became Prime Minister would be to look seriously at Jamaica's economy. "For too long Jamaica has been talking about economic growth, but not economic development; they both go hand in hand." She said Jamaicans living abroad are ideally positioned and strategically placed to make a significant contribution to their homeland.