THE EDITOR, Sir:
A leadership challenge was destined to happen as the reality of December 2011 simmered and set like 'ice in a freezer' - the cold, hard truth of life yet again in opposition.
It is without doubt an indictment on the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) that a party with a proven track record of failure since Independence, and which brought untold destruction, first with Michael Manley, then P.J. Patterson, and now with Portia Simpson Miller, was gifted yet another term to complete their disaster, or reverse it.
A forensic analysis of the JLP's loss was undertaken, the results of which are known only to the authors and a select few within the JLP. Why? My own layman's view of the loss is simple: The JLP lacked organisation, a cohesive vision, and effective leadership - never mind all the other distractions which occurred!
Effective leadership, however, can stimulate organisation and a cohesive vision - it is the most important factor in moving the JLP and, by extension, the country forward.
Therefore, of what negative concern should you or I be of a pending leadership challenge? Is it not that which is paramount to fixing our cancerous affliction since Independence? And what of democracy? Is it not a democratic system of governance we hope to preside over and are entrenched in via our Constitution? How, therefore, can a political party scoff at internal democratic systems and simultaneously lust at governing the country? The two positions are at variance and smack of hypocrisy and soft despotism!
Audley Shaw deserves his chance at leadership, as he is eminently qualified to do so. I support his endeavour, as the JLP will be better for it. The JLP needs clarity of purpose and a sure-footed approach on matters of importance, with silence banished from its list of action items at this time.
At the close of play come November, whoever is elected leader will have my unequivocal support, and a clear mandate to govern the party without distractions.