JIS News

Daryl Vaz was sworn in Tuesday (March 31), at Gordon House, as the Member of Parliament(MP) for West Portland, following his success in last week Monday’s by-election in the constituency.
Mr. Vaz won the by-election by scoring 7,915 votes to defeat the People’s National Party’s (PNP) candidate, Kenneth Rowe, who polled 5,626, and retained the seat he had won in the 2007 General Election, but lost in the Courts which ruled that he was ineligible to sit in Parliament because of his United States citizenship.
Mr. Vaz renounced his U.S. citizenship prior to contesting the by-election, which was ordered by the Courts. He will be sworn in on Wednesday(April 1) at King’s House, as Minister of State in the Office of the Prime Minister(OPM), the position he held prior to the Court’s decision.
Prime Minister Bruce Golding was among the Members who welcomed back Mr. Vaz to the House of Representatives.
“I want to say how pleased we are, not only that he has rejoined us, but he has rejoined us with a much stronger and more secure mandate,” Mr. Golding said.
Minister of Energy, Clive Mullings, said that Mr. Vaz’s election victory was not an ordinary one, in the course of things.
“It was a demonstration of faith and confidence in a representative who works hard and, despite the views put forward by analysts about the role of representatives and on the constitutional issues, the exercise of democracy has shown that you must always have faith and confidence in the people,” he said.
In his response, Mr. Vaz noted that the by-election was not only non-violent and fun, but that the people had set an example for the other 59 constituencies to follow.
“The events that culminated in my swearing in today have been a victory for the rule of law, a victory for democracy and for the will of the electorate in West Portland and a victory for true representation. I look forward to continuing to work with all Members of Parliament for the upliftment of the lives of the people of West Portland and Jamaica,” Mr. Vaz said.

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