JIS News

This is a great and very special day for our country and I consider myself wonderfully privileged to be a part of it.
I am proud to have contributed to the evolution of our democracy and of the political process which enable us to celebrate in grand Jamaican style a change of leadership by orderly and peaceful means that cannot be surpassed anywhere in the democratic world.
As a result of that I stand here this afternoon to offer my warmest congratulations to a worthy and most deserving successor with all the sincerity and goodwill emanating from over thirty years of close association.
I am certain that the baton has been securely passed for the next leg of the relay with our team, like the 2004 Olympians, continuing to run in the lane to which history has assigned us. It is that same lane in which we started the race in 1938.
I am particularly gratified that we have been able to ensure a seamless and transparent process in the change of leadership, so that the country can experience change without confusion or chaos and that we are thereby enhancing the best and most wholesome of our Jamaican political traditions.
It has been a privilege and a distinct honour to have been able to serve for fourteen years as Prime Minister of this blessed land.
We have had our triumphs and successes, but we have also shared our moments of disappointment. But what is life itself if it is not that?
The journey has been a journey of peaks and valleys, but never one where any mountain was too high or any valley too dangerous to cause us to falter.With the undergirding of the blessings of the Almighty and the prayers of the people, I have been fortified and encouraged in all my endeavours and I would like on this occasion to say a final word of thanks for the generous support which I have received from all those who wish Jamaica well.
I know that Prime Minister Simpson Miller will be depending on and will receive abundant blessings herself and I am sure that she will be empowered likewise.
To my Cabinet and other members of the Government – who all demitted office immediately as a consequence of my retirement, I use this opportunity to thank them publicly and very specially for their service and sacrifice to the country, and to wish them well in their future endeavours. Jamaica is a country with a proud and growing record of achievements in the fields of investment creation, the creative arts, international diplomacy, industrial relations, sports and community development – all well known and understood by the new Prime Minister.
In many of these areas, she herself has played a critical role.
I am confident that the country will be able to rise to new levels of economic growth and witness upward social mobility as we continue to build on the foundations which have been well and truly laid and to profit from the traditions bequeathed to us by earlier generations.
Prime Minister Simpson Miller, in the spirit of one who has travelled along the political pathway with you for nearly four decades I salute you, I commend you, and I wish for you all that is good as you assume office. May you enjoy calm seas and a prosperous voyage and may your efforts be crowned with abundant success.
As you continue on a new leg in the journey, let us make Jamaica fully triumphant, proud and free.
May God continue to guide you.
I pray that God will forever bless Jamaica, land we love.