After The Campaigning “Dunn”

On Monday, October 30th vot­ers in the St.Mary South East Constituency will go to the polls to chose a mem­ber of Parliament to rep­re­sent them in the House of Representatives.
The seat became vacant after the sit­ting People’s National Party Member of Parliament Dr. Winston Green passed away. Green had won the seat against the Jamaica Labor Party chal­lenger Dr.Norman Dunn by a mere five(5) votes on the last go around.
This elec­tion has much sig­nif­i­cance for both polit­i­cal par­ties. At issue is a sig­nif­i­cant fact that the Governing JLP would like a bit of breath­ing room over and above the one seat it has in the 63 seat Legislature.
At present, the JLP has 32 seats to the PNP’s 31, win­ning the St Mary South East seat would be a tremen­dous boost to the Andrew Holness led JLP which would be up 33 seats to the PNP’s 30.

Norman Dunn the JLP’s can­di­date

Conversely, was the PNP to retain that seat the par­ty would retain the sta­tus quo and retain a sit­u­a­tion which keeps Andrew Holness and the JLP look­ing over their shoul­ders.
Retaining the seat would mean that vot­ers want the PNP to be strong and vig­i­lant in Opposition. Winning that seat would indi­cate a will­ing­ness on the part of at least the peo­ple in that con­stituen­cy to give Holness some lever­age to advance his agen­da.

In the 26 years since I left Jamaica not much has changed for the bet­ter.
Politics is con­duct­ed the very same way, parochial­ly, and appeal­ing to the most base instincts of the poor­est of our peo­ple.
Patching roads by the light of trucks at the last moment, hand­ing out box lunch­es and red stripe beer ‚de-bush­ing exer­cis­es, due to the upcom­ing elec­tions is an insult to the intel­li­gence of the peo­ple, yet those prac­tices form part of the real­i­ty of elec­tion­eer­ing Jamaica style.

Dr. Shane Alexis of the PNP

Positively, it is wor­thy of note that polit­i­cal killings are a thing of the past although mur­der has gone up over­all.
The trav­el­ing motor­cades and rev­el­ry asso­ci­at­ed with the cam­paigns lend a bit of nos­tal­gia, a feel­ing rem­i­nis­cent of a sim­pler space in time.
Yet despite the pas­sage of time, it appears that not much has changed since the first nation­al elec­tions were held on the Island.

PM Holness walks bar feet with sup­port­ers.

Patronage, Poverty, and Puffery seem to dom­i­nate, despite the pas­sage of time. In the end, the Jamaican peo­ple are still where Jamaica start­ed in 1962 when the nation was first giv­en its inde­pen­dence.
Bad roads, no roads, no lights, no potable water, yet ever the polit­i­cal junkies’ peo­ple flock to cam­paign events hang­ing from the sides and steps of vehi­cles, endan­ger­ing their lives for a few moments of an adren­a­line rush.

On Tuesday they go back to their lives as they were before, gone will be the long line of cam­paign vehi­cles, bod­ies hang­ing off with total obliv­ion.
Gone will be the horns and loud music one man will be the win­ner, the oth­er the los­er, what will be left is the hor­rid defac­ing imagery of orange and green paint splashed crude­ly on build­ings and walls and even trees to make their point.
Stacks of stick­ers, flags, and cam­paign posters will remain, the only reminder of the cam­paign past.

Phillips a dinosaur of pol­i­tics must take some of the blame for the state of affairs not just in that con­stituen­cy but Island-wide.

The images of our nation’s chief exec­u­tive and the can­di­date walk­ing bare feet across streams is not an endear­ing image as I believe they were intend­ed, rather they rep­re­sent the lack of atten­tion which has been placed on the peo­ple’s busi­ness since 1962.
In fair­ness to the Prime Minister, this can­not be laid at his or Dunn’s bare feet.[no pun intend­ed]
What kind of real pro­tec­tion are those bare feet offi­cers able to give to the Prime Minister con­sid­er­ing the weapons in the hands of ordi­nary crim­i­nals and their brazen­ness today?
There need to be change rem­i­nis­cent of where we are in time, none of this is it and the Jamaican peo­ple are worse off for it.