JIS News

The Jamaica Information Service’s National Heritage Debate Competition was officially launched in Montego Bay on Tuesday (October 6), with Montego Bay High School emerging winners over Mt. Alvernia High School in the first of a series of seven matches to be held in the western region.
Eight schools from Hanover, St. James and Westmoreland are expected to argue the moot, ” Be it resolved that The Rt. Excellent Sir Alexander Bustamante achieved more for Jamaica as a trade unionist than as a politician”. Manager of Regional Services at JIS, Winsome Christie, said the competition started some six years ago with 29 schools participating. This year, she noted, there were 40 schools vying for a position in the national finals, which would be held in November. “The main objectives of the debate are to develop an awareness of our heritage among our young people, as well as to stimulate research and to engender a sense of nationalism among students. On this basis, the JIS is very pleased to be staging this competition, which started over six years ago, and which would this year, be carried out in all the six regions,” Mrs. Christie said. The Regional Services Manager pointed out that because the debate had been consistently of a high standard, the teachers and principals have given the nod for their students to participate. “I want to take this opportunity to thank all the schools for their participation and also our main sponsors (the Jamaica Public Service Company Limited) for making the special effort to support the debate competition this year,” she said. Deputy Mayor of Montego Bay, Councillor Cecil Davis, hailed the debate competition as a worthwhile event that continued to play an important role in the lives of people, and in the educational development of youth. “This activity is very timely as not too many of our people are aware of our heritage and of our civic responsibilities, and the things that have made our country such a rich and memorable place,” Councillor Davis said. Speaking to JIS News after the debate, the Deputy Mayor commended the teams for their deportment, presentations and the overall standard of the debate. “I think the JIS team ought to be commended for an excellent job.the standard was excellent, it can go anywhere. I think they can go international,” Mr. Davis stressed. Chief Judge of the competition, Violet Stephenson, in announcing the winners, noted that both teams did exceptionally well.
“It was a difficult decision because both teams, we felt, were very good. We saw some eloquent speakers, we saw quite a bit of research, we saw good teamwork and good observation skills and in terms of the presentations, these were of a very high standard”, Mrs. Stephenson reported.
The final in the seven-match series is to be played on Thursday, October 30.

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