JIS News

Prime Minister P.J. Patterson has stated that as Jamaica continues to build a participatory democracy, what has been achieved through efforts to reduce political tribalism can be regarded as some of the most important steps in the process.
The Prime Minister who was speaking in Toronto, Canada on Tuesday (Apr. 6), noted that included in the process was the creation of the Office of the Public Defender, the restoration of the Political Ombudsman, the reform of the electoral system and the establishment of a National Contracts Commission to facilitate the non-partisan distribution of social benefits including land and housing.
“Irrespective of your political view you must live somewhere on the rock and I have deliberately refused to be part of building any garrison communities. I want people of different political beliefs to be able to live in peace and unity,” the Prime Minister said.
In his address to the largely Jamaican audience that gathered at the Jamaican Canadian Association, Mr Patterson said the system of Government should be open and transparent and that the Government had enacted laws to ensure absolute accountability. This, he said, involved the opening of Parliamentary Committee to the public and the press as well as the referring of bills to a joint select committee of Parliament which provided an opportunity for civic organisations and special interest groups to participate in the development of legislations such as the child Care and Protection Act and the Property (Rights of Spouses) Act.

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