Tue | Dec 18, 2018

Grand waste of resources

Published:Monday | August 25, 2014 | 12:00 AM


It's a week away from the start of the new school year and many parents are experiencing severe financial constraints. It is practicality and frugality when parents deny children grand sweet 16th birthday parties or fancy gadgets when they are in a financial bind to ensure they can pay for those CXC subjects.

In contrast, a man may be three months in arrears on his mortgage, owes school fees and indebted in other ways, and may choose to borrow from a friend to have a grand silver anniversary celebration. Yes, many will criticise him for lack of prudence. But who knows? His grand anniversary celebration may prove quite an inspiration and motivation resulting in his financial transformation. The man's personal affairs are not my prerogative, but the nation's business.

Jamaica is one of the most indebted countries and our decision to have a Grand Gala Independence celebration is similar to that indebted man's situation. We have a penchant for celebrations. But how have these been boosting the economy or improving the standard of living of the average Jamaican?

We have the goal of Vision 2030 to achieve first-world status. It cannot be over emphasised that education is a solid foundation on which we will build a great nation. In achieving any goal, the following traits become critical: a discerning ability, decisiveness, discipline, delayed gratification and determination.

Even the devil deserves his due. Full marks must be given to the government's decisiveness and determination to spend scarce resources and have a Grand Gala celebration!

I have great respect for our Emancipation and Independence. But sometimes we can have a meaningful observation and reflection without any grand celebration, especially if it means we are prioritising education.

Daive R Facey