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  • Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Noel Arscott, has lauded the role played by the city of Montego Bay in the economic and cultural history of Jamaica, pointing to its pioneering achievements in tourism, industry and commerce.
  • The Minister was speaking at a civic ceremony commemorating the 35th anniversary of Montego Bay’s city status, in Sam Sharpe Square, on October 9.
  • He commended the citizens of Montego Bay for their pioneering spirit, noting that it was Montego Bay’s city status that led to the establishment of Portmore, St. Catherine, as a Municipality.

Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Noel Arscott, has lauded the role played by the city of Montego Bay in the economic and cultural history of Jamaica, pointing to its pioneering achievements in tourism, industry and commerce.

The Minister was speaking at a civic ceremony commemorating the 35th  anniversary of Montego Bay’s city status, in Sam Sharpe Square, on October 9.

“St. James is regarded as pivotal to the whole anti-slavery movement (and) Montego Bay had been significant in that fight that was paid for in blood, sweat and tears. Thirty-five years on (as a city), Montego Bay continues to play a significant role in the development of the country,” Mr. Arscott said.

He commended the citizens of Montego Bay for their pioneering spirit, noting that it was Montego Bay’s city status that led to the establishment of Portmore, St. Catherine, as a Municipality.

“You are pioneers in many areas…tourism, Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), industry and commerce,” the Minister said.

He charged the citizens of Montego Bay to continue building on the foundations established by previous generations, to ensure the advancement of the city.

For his part, the Mayor of Montego Bay, Councillor Glendon Harris, said that,  “as City Fathers, we continue to forge new alliances that will guarantee the wide-ranging development of Montego Bay and the parish of St. James as a whole.”

“The St. James Parish Council,  through the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB),  has completed the Montego Bay Action Plan, themed ‘One Bay For All’,  which is  built on three pillars – Fiscal and Government Sustainability; Urban Sustainability; and Environmental Sustainability,” he noted.

He said moves are being made to ensure the viability of downtown Montego Bay through a project that will see the creation of a space mirroring Emancipation Park in Kingston, which will be useful to the common man.

“Plans are also afoot for a walkability project focusing on the corridor from the Cruise Ship Terminal into the downtown area. This venture will result in significant economic, environmental and health benefits,” the Mayor added.

He called for greater unity among Montegonians, as it is their combined efforts that will build the city.

“I charge us to demonstrate greater civic pride in the way we treat our city and communities.  Let us be more compassionate to each other and return to the days of being our brother’s keeper,” the Mayor urged.

The Keys to the city were presented posthumously to the musical icons, Philip James and Lloyd Campbell, better known as the Blues Busters, who were from Montego Bay.