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Warmington gives ombudsman cold shoulder

Published:Tuesday | November 24, 2015 | 4:10 PMDaraine Luton

New political ombudsman Donna Parchment Brown turned up at the House of Representatives on Tuesday for the first time since being appointed, but no sooner had her presence been announced by Speaker Michael Peart, Everald Warmington, member of parliament for South West St Catherine, rose in disgust.

Warmington has been opposed to the post remaining part of Jamaica's system, saying that it was outdated. A resolution brought by him to scrap the office was approved by the Parliament.

"It says that the position should be abolished, and we accepted it in this House," Warmington said.

"If it goes to Cabinet and Cabinet does not accept the recommendation from this House, a report should come back to the House and advise us. We should not read in the paper that a political ombudsman has been appointed after this Parliament, the highest authority and body in this country, takes a position," he added.

Phillip Paulwell, leader of government business in the House of Representatives, said that the appointment of a political ombudsman is the domain of the governor general.

He, however, conceded that "a report should really have come back to say that the Cabinet did not find favour".

Parchment Brown, an attorney-at-law, was last week sworn in as the island's fourth political ombudsman.

Parchment Brown will serve for seven years. She succeeds Bishop Herro Blair, who resigned in 2013 at the height of the debate on the motion brought by Warmington.