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G2K needs new spokesmen, says review committee

Published:Thursday | May 10, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Daraine Luton, Senior Staff Reporter

GENERATION 2000 (G2K), the professional arm of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP), is being encouraged to move away from relying overwhelming on its president as the voice of the organisation.

A review committee, which considered the state of the G2K following the JLP's general election defeat in December, identified issues of leadership, tribalism and intolerance as areas which need to be addressed within the organisation.

"The committee recommends that specialists be developed to research and speak on different policy areas ultimately aligned to ministries of government," the Kamina Johnson-Smith-led committee said.

It added that the development of specialists would reduce the reliance on the president to speak to each and every national issue.

Delano Seiveright, president of G2K, said the organisation became the communication arm of the JLP. He said while it was not a mistake to have taken on tough issues on behalf of the party, the recommendations of the Johnson-Smith committee would help to guide the development of the organisation.

In the meantime, Johnson Smith said the committee did not find Seiveright to have been a liability to the organisation because of his many provocative utterances.

"It has been acknowledged that Mr Seiveright took strident positions and he was perceived at time as being tribal and that, of course, was associated with the organisation that had always fought against tribalism," she said.

Reduced attractiveness

The committee said the perception of G2K as having reverted to more traditional political lines has reduced its attractiveness to professionals and aspiring professionals.

"G2K was founded to embrace co-operation and tolerance of individuals and their points of view," the committee noted.

It has recommended that the organisation recommit to the principle of tolerance, urging that even when controversial issues are being confronted, the G2K "must make every effort to do so without appearing tribal and intolerant".

The committee has also recommended that the G2K return to "robust analysis in order to enhance policy development" for the country.