Quality of Life Has Improved – Dr. Phillips


Minister of National Security, Dr. Hon. Peter Phillips, has said that Jamaica has made significant progress over the years, with the quality of life of the majority of the population greatly improved.
Citing data from the ‘Survey of Living Conditions’ Dr. Phillips said that life expectancy had been extended and now approached the levels of most developed countries. In addition, he said, most major communicable diseases such as polio, tuberculosis, yellow fever, which were commonplace during the 1930’s and 1940’s have been eliminated.
“Housing stock, available transportation, communication services have all been improved to the benefit of the majority,” he pointed out. Dr. Phillips was delivering the Norman Manley lecture yesterday (March 15) on the Mona campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI) where he spoke on the topic: ‘Contemplating the Challenges in Nation Building: Politics and Rule of Law’.
He said that despite the achievements, the country faced the challenge of increasing levels of crime and violence.
“Crime threatens the very survival of the Jamaican state and by extension, poses the possibility of a collapse of the entire nationalist project originated by Norman Manley and his colleagues. The increases in the levels of crime and in particular, violent crime and increase in general public disorder, severely curtail the enjoyment of any right including the right to life for too many in the population,” he stated.
Dr. Phillips noted that in order to address these challenges, the modernization and reform of the security forces must be maintained and a greater level of trust had to exist between the citizens and the police force.
He further pointed to the need for legislative and administrative provisions that would enable the identification, investigation and conviction and effective punishment of criminals.
He urged the gathering to play their part in reducing the increased levels in crime and violence through valuable contribution to nation building.
Commenting on Norman Manley’s legacy, Dr. Phillips said his contribution transcended the mere demand for nationhood. “He was able by virtue of his legendary self-discipline, order and hard work to elaborate the essentials of his vision of nationhood and to lay the foundation, erect the institutional architecture of the political and administrative arrangements,” he pointed out.
“In addition, he helped define identities, loyalties and ideas that still today represent the essence of Jamaican nationhood,” Minister Phillips added.

JIS Social