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Junor blasts Butch

Published:Monday | August 16, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Former government minister John Junor has lambasted hotelier Gordon 'Butch' Stewart for his attack on Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett.

"I have no brief to carry for Minister Edmund Bartlett. He is a member of the Cabinet of his country and is entitled to be treated with respect," Junor told a meeting of People's National Party supporters in the South East St Andrew constituency last night.

Stewart, who is also chairman of JAMPRO, the state's business and tourism promotion agency, last week said Bartlett has been "yapping" away and did not understand the tourist industry.

"My word of advice to Bartlett is to stop yapping and start fixing the operations side, which is making us less able to develop the quality tourism product we have and the competitiveness that we need," Stewart said.

But Junor, who served in Cabinets headed by former P.J. Patterson, said Bartlett, a member of the governing Jamaica Labour Party, said that it was difficult for meaningful dialogue to take place in an atmosphere of acrimony.

"Our public debate in this country cannot be characterised by running away from the issues or, as some have done recently, to elevate public discussion to a cuss-cuss ... . Is that going to contribute to reasonable public dialogue?

"And it speaks to something else, because duppy know who to frighten. He couldn't tell me that," Junor said.

' Duppy know who to frighten. He couldn't tell me that.' - Junor