Sat | Nov 26, 2022

Tufton: ‘Who are we to judge George Wright?’

Published:Monday | November 14, 2022 | 12:09 AM

WESTERN BUREAU:

Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton has declared that George Wright, the member of parliament for Westmoreland Central, should be pardoned by the Jamaican people once he has sought to make amends for wrongs he may have committed.

Addressing the Jamaica Labour Party’s (JLP) parish conference at Manning’s School in Savanna-la-Mar, Westmoreland, on Sunday, Tufton said that as a predominantly Christian country, Jamaica has no place to pass judgement on Wright, who had won the seat on a JLP ticket in September 2020.

“George had an alleged unfortunate incident, which, based on the allegations, we must never condone and we must discourage, but I put it to you today, if George Wright has made peace with his God and those he has transgressed against, who are we to judge George Wright?” asked Tufton, who claimed not to have details on the allegations.

“... If George Wright’s spiritual leader goes in the public square and says George Wright has made peace with God for his transgressions, who are we to judge George Wright? We live in a predominantly Christian country, and the basic tenets of Christianity are about forgiveness, love, empathy … . Those who have no sin, cast the first stone, and none of us can cast the stone, which is why we must forgive,” he added.

Tufton was referencing allegations that Wright was the man seen in a 2021 video pummeling a woman with his fist and a stool.

Wright and his partner, Tannisha Singh, had reported a confrontation on April 6, 2021, that coincided with the video, which went viral days later. Neither of the two cooperated with the police, thus dooming the investigation.

Wright, who has neither denied nor confirmed whether he was the man in the video, resigned from the JLP after the party’s parliamentary caucus distanced itself from him. He now serves as an independent MP.

But while Wright was not physically present at Sunday’s JLP meeting in Westmoreland, his influence could be felt among the party’s supporters, some of whom openly declared, “No George Wright, no JLP!” immediately after the conference ended.

Remarks Sunday by Morland Wilson, MP for Westmoreland Western, suggest that the door is not closed on Wright - part of a narrative of mixed messaging by the JLP.

“The George Wright issue is an ongoing one, and the party will make a decision … . ... As it pertains to his membership with the party, it will be something the secretariat will have to take on board because there have been calls for him to return,” said Wilson.