Categorized | News, Regional

Holness guides JLP to victory

By Peter Richards

Adapted from contributions

Andrew Holness

CMC – Five years after he was booted out of office, Andrew Holness, 43, guided his Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) back into the corridors of power promising to lead a transparent and open government accountable to the voters that elected it into office.

Holness led the JLP to a 33-30 seat victory over the incumbent People’s National Party (PNP) that was seeking a second consecutive term in power under the 70-year-old Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller.

“Our mission is to move Jamaica from poverty to prosperity, our mission is to make it possible for you and your children to fulfil your dreams and aspirations,” Holness told jubilant party supporters.

Holness, is expected to be sworn in Tuesday as the island’s prime minister following the February 25 general election, the Jamaica Observer newspaper reported.

The EOJ said final counting for all constituencies across the island should be completed by Monday.

The paper said the in-coming prime minister is also expected to get a briefing from outgoing Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips on the proposed bugdet and the state of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) negotiations.

Meanwhile, the Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association (JMA) and American Chamber of Commerce of Jamaica have sent congratulatory messages to Holness.

The JMA said it was fully committed to working with the new administration to further stimulate growth and sustainable development.

portia calls_0

Prime Minister Simpson Miller

Following the elections, Holness said that the victory amounted to having been given the “authority to lead this country from poverty to prosperity,” adding “it has been a very long hard journey, but we are here because we have been faithful to the Jamaican people”.

Holness who easily retained his St. Andrew West Central seat by polling 8,625 votes as against 6,384 for Patrick Roberts, will have his wife, Juliet a member of his new government after she also easily trounced Imani Duncan Price by a margin of 8,212 to 6,432 votes in an all-female battle.

Simpson-Miller, who became the second woman prime minister to be defeated in general elections in the Caribbean within a six-month period, did not really accept defeat to the JLP, saying that she would await the outcome of the recount in some of the constituencies.

Very late news before press time hint that there may be a change in winning seats as the JLP lead might go down by one, making a 32-31.

“Some of you look sad if I can smile give me a bright smile,” she said, adding “I know you are hurting we feel it too”.

Prime Minister Simpson Miller, who would have celebrated her 10th anniversary at the helm of the PNP on Thursday, acknowledged that the “campaign was very peaceful” and praised the security forces as well as the electoral officials for ensuring a free and fair poll.

However, while a CARICOM team observed the general elections on Thursday said that voters had been able to “cast ballots without intimidation” and that the results reflected “the will of the people of Jamaica”; The Organization of American States mission (EOM) that observed the Jamaica general elections said today that acts of violence during the campaign as well as on election day “do not support the electoral process”.

The EOM, which was one of two regional and international groups that observed the election, said that it had “taken careful note of the incidents of violence which occurred prior to and on Election Day.

Then, in his congratulatory speech, Holness said that the JLP carried a message of hope to Jamaica, reminding them “this is not the end of a journey, it is the beginning of change Jamaica.

“We have a message that Jamaica can be a better place, it is a young message,” he said, adding “I make the commitment to you your new government will not be a government as usual, we are going to change the way in which we operate”.

He said the victory at the polls should not be regarded as a “prize” and “we knw the cost of victory is accountability.

“We are under no illusion as to the ability of all Jamaican to hold this government to account. We have a team…and all members of this team is committed to serving you,” he said.

According to the existing figures, the JLP received 436,459 of the popular votes as compared with 432, 353 for the PNP. The Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) said that an estimated 1.8 million people were eligible to cast ballots in the election, the 17th since the island attained adult suffrage 70 years ago. But, the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) is late Friday conducting a recount of the ballots cast in several constituencies and the paper said Holness could be sworn in following the end of the exercise.

The voter turn out was estimated at 47.62 per cent

Opinion polls had predicted that the outcome of the elections would be a close affair and political observers note that the PNP had lost 11 of the seats it had won in the 2011 poll with fewer than 600 votes.

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

By Peter Richards

Adapted from contributions

Andrew Holness

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CMC – Five years after he was booted out of office, Andrew Holness, 43, guided his Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) back into the corridors of power promising to lead a transparent and open government accountable to the voters that elected it into office.

Holness led the JLP to a 33-30 seat victory over the incumbent People’s National Party (PNP) that was seeking a second consecutive term in power under the 70-year-old Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller.

“Our mission is to move Jamaica from poverty to prosperity, our mission is to make it possible for you and your children to fulfil your dreams and aspirations,” Holness told jubilant party supporters.

Holness, is expected to be sworn in Tuesday as the island’s prime minister following the February 25 general election, the Jamaica Observer newspaper reported.

The EOJ said final counting for all constituencies across the island should be completed by Monday.

The paper said the in-coming prime minister is also expected to get a briefing from outgoing Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips on the proposed bugdet and the state of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) negotiations.

Meanwhile, the Jamaica Manufacturers’ Association (JMA) and American Chamber of Commerce of Jamaica have sent congratulatory messages to Holness.

The JMA said it was fully committed to working with the new administration to further stimulate growth and sustainable development.

portia calls_0

Prime Minister Simpson Miller

Following the elections, Holness said that the victory amounted to having been given the “authority to lead this country from poverty to prosperity,” adding “it has been a very long hard journey, but we are here because we have been faithful to the Jamaican people”.

Holness who easily retained his St. Andrew West Central seat by polling 8,625 votes as against 6,384 for Patrick Roberts, will have his wife, Juliet a member of his new government after she also easily trounced Imani Duncan Price by a margin of 8,212 to 6,432 votes in an all-female battle.

Simpson-Miller, who became the second woman prime minister to be defeated in general elections in the Caribbean within a six-month period, did not really accept defeat to the JLP, saying that she would await the outcome of the recount in some of the constituencies.

Very late news before press time hint that there may be a change in winning seats as the JLP lead might go down by one, making a 32-31.

“Some of you look sad if I can smile give me a bright smile,” she said, adding “I know you are hurting we feel it too”.

Prime Minister Simpson Miller, who would have celebrated her 10th anniversary at the helm of the PNP on Thursday, acknowledged that the “campaign was very peaceful” and praised the security forces as well as the electoral officials for ensuring a free and fair poll.

However, while a CARICOM team observed the general elections on Thursday said that voters had been able to “cast ballots without intimidation” and that the results reflected “the will of the people of Jamaica”; The Organization of American States mission (EOM) that observed the Jamaica general elections said today that acts of violence during the campaign as well as on election day “do not support the electoral process”.

The EOM, which was one of two regional and international groups that observed the election, said that it had “taken careful note of the incidents of violence which occurred prior to and on Election Day.

Then, in his congratulatory speech, Holness said that the JLP carried a message of hope to Jamaica, reminding them “this is not the end of a journey, it is the beginning of change Jamaica.

“We have a message that Jamaica can be a better place, it is a young message,” he said, adding “I make the commitment to you your new government will not be a government as usual, we are going to change the way in which we operate”.

He said the victory at the polls should not be regarded as a “prize” and “we knw the cost of victory is accountability.

“We are under no illusion as to the ability of all Jamaican to hold this government to account. We have a team…and all members of this team is committed to serving you,” he said.

According to the existing figures, the JLP received 436,459 of the popular votes as compared with 432, 353 for the PNP. The Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) said that an estimated 1.8 million people were eligible to cast ballots in the election, the 17th since the island attained adult suffrage 70 years ago. But, the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) is late Friday conducting a recount of the ballots cast in several constituencies and the paper said Holness could be sworn in following the end of the exercise.

The voter turn out was estimated at 47.62 per cent

Opinion polls had predicted that the outcome of the elections would be a close affair and political observers note that the PNP had lost 11 of the seats it had won in the 2011 poll with fewer than 600 votes.