The week: Still waiting to exhale

Prime Minister Golding and his government start to ring the changes and gladden hearts.

Taxes

Transfer taxes abolished, stamp duty reduced !

Real estate agents and home owners rejoice. When will these kick in ? I notice the Minister of Finance didn’t mention that part….. Just asking……

Parliament

The Opposition is to chair five committees in addition to the public accounts committee. Leader of the Opposition, the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate all get improved status. Not clear what this is going to mean for governance…… Great idea or gridlock ?

The Prime Minister plans to revamp Parliament’s website (now defunct , of course, as it was another Phillip Paulwell effort) to allow greater access to Parliamentary documents. Good news for serious bloggers (I don’t mean me)

Same old, same old….

Jamaica is ranked more corrupt than ever by Transparency International. No big surprise after Trafigura, Solutrea and other youthful exuberances of former Minister Phillip Paulwell et al.

We are also suffocating under our tax burden and our debt burden and tons of red tape.

And cement dey pon shortage again…..despite Minister Samuda and Prime Minister Golding chastising the Caribbean Cement Company (our sole manufacturer)………


“Back to the Future – The Complete Trilogy (Full Screen Edition)” (Robert Zemeckis)

Breathing space for the government ?

The JLP’s Tarn Peralto wins South East St. Mary after counting of two remaining ballot boxes. Seat count still 33- 27.

Or chickens coming home to roost ?

Eastern Hanover is still waiting for a declaration, but PNP’s D.K. Duncan was leading by 12 votes last Monday when JLP stopped the second recount. Next week’s likely seat count 32-28.

Abe Dabdoub (PNP) challenges Minister Without Portfolio Daryl Vaz’s U.S. passport in court on October 16.

Next up, Oswest Senior Smith (PNP) challenges Minister Without Portfolio Shahine Robinson’s U.S. passport; followed by Phyllis Mitchell (PNP) challenge to JLP’s Gregory Mair’s Venezuelan passport.

Abe Dabdoub, long time JLP lawyer, now PNP lawyer, says that the citizenship challenges are not likely to take years because the rules have changed and judges can now set the timetable for cases (attorneys used to be able to delay and put off cases at will)…….

If the PNP wins the 3 pending citizenship cases (shifting the seat count to a PNP lead of 31 to 29) will they really try to take back the government, when the voters gave the JLP a 4 seat victory ?

What happens if the PNP win only 2 of the citizenship cases (Daryl Vaz maintains his U.S. citizenship comes through his mother, which is permitted under the Constitution) and the seat count is 30-30 ?

It’s sort of hard to believe that anyone misses Phillip Paulwell or Peter Phillips or Maxine Henry-Wilson or Omar Davies…..

On the other hand, there are a lot of people who just discovered that all politicians talk out of both sides of their mouths, namely:-

(1) Parents who’ve now realized that free tuition doesn’t cover books or ‘school development fees’ or extra-curricular activities, and that these costs always made up the majority of school fees.

(2) The nurses who say they have a DVD of Minister of Finance Audley Shaw promising them a 100% increase in pay at their Founder’s Day celebrations in the not-so-distant past (July 2006). He says he never did. They say they are not going to use the DVD until salary negotiations next April….just a little warning to the government that even though the nurses (and doubtless, the police and teachers) know that the JLP was just electioneering when all these wild promises were made, they intend to remind them of these promises “when time come….

“When time come” is likely to be rather sooner than next April.

“When time come” is likely to be when Prime Minister Golding has to call an election :-

EITHER the Local Government elections which are due by December 2007

OR a by-election in a seat(s) where the JLP winner has been removed by the courts

OR a general election if no other compromise can be found and the Government is holding a minority of seats in Parliament.

Once any sort of election is called, campaigning will begin and that is when the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance will have to account for promises made……
Today’s Gleaner (Sept 29, 07) suggests that the JLP has a Plan B to deal with their “marginal victory problem” – purchase a few M.P.’s from the Opposition, preferably those that used to be Labourites….

Next few months should be fun for the onlookers (those of you living outside Jamaica) and sure to be hell for those of us here on island….

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Trinidad catches election fever

Trinis will go to the polls on November 5, 2007. Thanks to Island Spice and Caribbean Free Radio for telling us about the hilarious secret blog of Prime Minister of Trinidad, Patrick Manning. Calling all Jamaican bloggers ! What about ‘The Secret Diary of Sister P’ ? Or “The Private Thoughts of Your New Prime Minister by Bruce Golding “? Wonder if PM Manning has any advice for PM Golding about how to govern with a hung Parliament …….( Trinidad had general elections in December 2000, December 2001 and October 2002….due to slim or no majorities for the PNM or the UNC…….)


“The Mystic Masseur” (Ismail Merchant)

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One thought on “The week: Still waiting to exhale

  1. what is the Government offering the hugry teachers who is constantly knocking on his door for their wage increase and retroactive payment.

    it is clear that the Government does not recognised his obligation to the teachers and the other public sector work who he ignor so offten that it seemingly becoming the norm. the teachers have families that need to be fed and other finacial obligation that they must honour but with the unstable economy and food price increasing their days are becoming more stressing and the government is showing no sign of hope for the teachers. Each time the door is open his reply is he has no money except for the first time when he announce a wage freeze without consulting the union representing the public sector.

    with all the grants that the Government recieved, taxt collected and money recieve from the IMF i only can assume that no money paying out to the teachers is a part of the biding contract between the government and the IMF. however, the government is honouring his agreement with the IMF as a result all the test to this date has been passed but the he has harden his heart against the teacher ignoring the contract that he must honour. not only the public sector is disgruntled but wider society is questioning his credebility.

    The government must change his management style in which he look away fron the key people of the society and put the people first.

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