Another Minister of Government will temporarily oversee the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries until a new Minister is appointed, following the resignation of Floyd Green today (September 15).
Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, made the disclosure while addressing journalists at the vaccination site at the Windward Road Primary and Junior High School in East Kingston, on September 15.
The Prime Minister said he would not assume responsibility for the Ministry, given his current workload and oversight.
“I do intend to place the Ministry under temporary supervision until I have finalised the ministerial appointment for that ministry. At this point, having the COVID issues to deal with, I wouldn’t want to take on another responsibility where I will have to exercise even greater ministerial oversight,” he said.
“Already, I am the Minister of Economic Growth and Job Creation. I do have the office of the Prime Minister, which is a ministry in itself and I do play a significant role in national security through the National Security Council. I have to acknowledge the human limits and so I will ask another minister to oversee it until I am settled in my mind where to give it a final place of ministerial support,” he said.
The Prime Minister expressed disappointment in the video, which shows the former minister at a social gathering.
“We were all disappointed in seeing the video and Minister Green himself, having reflected upon it, also expressed his own disappointment and recommitted to ensuring that no such other incident ever occur… and he has apologised sincerely for it,” he said.
Commenting on Mr. Green’s contribution to Cabinet, the Prime Minister noted that he showed “great potential”.
He said it is important that Ministers exemplify the law, noting that Mr. Green did the right thing in offering his resignation.
Meanwhile, he said voluntary compliance is critical in the management of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have managed to get the people on board to follow the protocols, to follow the Orders under the Disaster Risk Management Act (DRMA), so we have not relied heavily on enforcement. We have relied on the trust and confidence of the people in voluntary compliance, and to a large degree most Jamaicans have complied to some extent,” Mr. Holness said.
“If there is any break in that synergy between the executive authority giving the mandate/orders under the DRMA and the confidence that we ourselves are not just preaching but doing what we are preaching, if there is a break in that and people start to feel that we are saying one thing and doing another, then the level of voluntary compliance will fall and it will become difficult to manage the pandemic in the way which we have done, which is by getting public support,” he added.