The Jamaica 2016 General Election

former Prime Minister Andrew Holness (l) Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller (r)

Former Prime Minister Andrew Holness (l) Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller (r)

The Jamaicans will go to the polls tomorrow to exercise their democratic right to vote for a government.  For those with a keen interest in politics the political campaign scene in Jamaica has followed the script. There has been the political froth spewed by the PNP and JLP. And of course the violence!

A few stories to wet the political appetite: Holness’ house reported to value USD300 million made the news clips and the ongoing investigation of his wife’s family related to drugs and money laundering. Simpson Miller appears to have escaped major controversy with attacks from the Opposition centred mainly on economic policy. It is no secret Jamaica is currently gripped by an IMF program, and the degree of austerity the elected government will have to unleash on Jamaicans fuelled platform debate.

It is interesting to observe the ‘quiet’ coverage by the local media the Jamaica general election has received in Barbados compared to Trinidad and Tobago held in September last year. One wonders if it has to do with the concentration of ownership by a Trinidadian concern or lack of interest based on incompetence. We encourage the BU family to timeout from navel gazing and share views on what the result of the election bodes for the Caribbean. One consideration is the fact many Jamaicans flock to Barbados to seek employment under the CSME movement of people arrangement. Will Jamaica retreat to the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) has its final appellate court. What role will Jamaica play to contribute to regional cooperation and the common space read Caricom.

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33 Comments on “The Jamaica 2016 General Election”

  1. Kevin February 24, 2016 at 8:56 AM #

    I also realised the quietness of the Jamaican election here on our airways, whilst the TnT election it was coverage day in-day out. And I think it has everything to do with the ownership by TnT of a lot of assets here.


  2. chad99999 February 24, 2016 at 11:52 AM #

    Jamaica and Trinidad had Oxford-educated leaders of substance and stature when I was a small child. Norman Manley was a Rhodes scholar. Eric Williams a PhD in History. Today the leaders have shrunk to the quarrelsome semi-literate Portia, and the merely quarrelsome Kamla. What has happened to the English-speaking Caribbean.


  3. David February 24, 2016 at 12:21 PM #

    Interesting to note political meetings in Jamaica require medical outposts.

    Also polling must cease on the eve of the election.


  4. LOOK February 24, 2016 at 8:16 PM #

    Should stay out of their business (Jamaica), also United States, Russia, Canada, etc.


  5. Gabriel February 24, 2016 at 8:29 PM #

    We can speak of men of learning and the irony of it all is that they were nurtured and educated under British colonial rule.With this self serving development called Independence,the baton has been passed on to semi literates,certainly in Jagdeo’s corrupt Guyana,Kamla’s corrupt Trinidad,the Birds corrupt Antigua,and someone Jamaican said his country was being led by a conductress.Worse yet is the once proud no 1 in the developing world,Barbados,is not led at all.It’s just marking time with a bunch of UWI JA’s drawing salaries by false pretences.


  6. Vincent Codrington February 24, 2016 at 8:35 PM #

    I am also surprised by the deafening silence of the local press and its columnist.Jamaica


  7. millertheanunnaki February 24, 2016 at 9:18 PM #

    @ Gabriel February 24, 2016 at 8:29 PM
    “…. and someone Jamaican said his country was being led by a conductress.Worse yet is the once proud no 1 in the developing world,Barbados,is not led at all.It’s just marking time with a bunch of UWI JA’s drawing salaries by false pretences.”

    Eh, you rude boi, you! So which you prefer?
    A conductress who not only communicates with her people but also consults the angels for guidance as to when to call elections or a arrogant overbearing jackass who lies to schoolchildren while walking about with the date of elections written on a piece of paper in his back pocket?

    Barbados is just a decade or two behind Jamaica with its garrison politics and associated gun violence.
    The youth of Barbados have been thoroughly indoctrinated with Jamaican dancehall and ghetto-style culture. It’s just a matter of time before the political landscape is so overrun.

    Whatever the Jamaicie bad boy do, you Bajan monkey man do too.


  8. David February 25, 2016 at 3:46 AM #

    The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) is mounting an electoral observer mission to monitor the general elections to be held in Jamaica on Thursday. The mission is headed by Josephine Tamai, chief elections officer, Elections and Boundaries Department, Belize. The other members of the mission are experts in electoral management and administration from Barbados, The Bahamas, Dominica, Saint Lucia, St Kitts and Nevis, St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago. [ 130 more words. ]…/caricom-mounts-observer-mission-for-…/

    CARICOM mounts observer mission for Jamaica elections


  9. LOOK February 25, 2016 at 11:51 AM #

    Jamaica alike Barbados and other caribbean countries has accumulated debt. Jamaica, none-the-less is doing something right. Barbados has/is doing everything wrong.


  10. Ghetto Jam February 25, 2016 at 1:16 PM #

    JLP will win this HANDS DOWN ….goodbye PORTIA.


  11. David February 25, 2016 at 11:24 PM #

    Looks like the JLP has wrestled the government from Portia.


  12. Global Infiltration February 26, 2016 at 5:41 AM #

    Fruendel’s turn next.


  13. ac February 26, 2016 at 7:37 AM #

    so much for polls


  14. ac February 26, 2016 at 9:03 AM #

    These elections are proving to be devilish for the female hopefully Clinton can break the trend. Going by the elections and out come in the cartibbean countries with poor economies led by men .the men so far have received favourable response by the electorate.


  15. Artax February 26, 2016 at 9:17 AM #

    “These elections are proving to be devilish for the female hopefully Clinton can break the trend.”

    I know it may be a bitter pill for you to swallow, far less write it. But perhaps this is what you meant to write:

    “These elections are proving to be devilish for the female hopefully (MIA MOTTLEY) can break the trend.


  16. Well Well & Consequences February 26, 2016 at 9:44 AM #

    AC…idiot, Clinton is the last person after Trump and Cruz you want as US president, are you blighted, why do you always have to back the lowlife, in punishment, although I do not think she is suitable, you should get Mia, as your next Prime Minister…lol


  17. Piece uh de Rock yeah right!!! February 26, 2016 at 10:03 AM #

    Hilary Clinton WILL WIN in the US of A just as Mia Amor Mottley will win here in Barbados.

    Few understand the dynamics of “change” and what (i) silence when people need the sound of one’s voice instead of silly letters (ii) (pretend) actions in the face of global economic policies, ebbs and tides and (iii) the loyalty of women to other women especially when men Fumble, Bugle and in the case of Donald Trump, pressage World War III wiating to be unleased when he presses a NUke at someone that he disagrees with and says “YOU’RE FIRED”


    All you have to do is to walk the streets of Barbados or Jamaica or wherever and you hear the plight of the common man, extrapolate that towards the person who is being touted as the successor AND it becomes obvious what the outcome will be

    It does not matter how many IPads will be brought in this time, and how many vote buying exercises that the DLP WILL ESSAY in this coming election, they will be a whitewash UNLIKE ANYTHING THE HISTORY OF BARBADOS POLITICS HAS EVER SEEN.

    Watch de ole man words


  18. ac February 26, 2016 at 10:47 AM #

    So much for the polls and pundits whose ideas of serving blackbird soup to the public as the delicacy of the day was swiftly dismissed at the polls


  19. Willie's February 26, 2016 at 10:57 AM #


    You sure FS is a whole man?


  20. Artax February 26, 2016 at 12:03 PM #

    “Political pundits, using recent opinion polls, believe the election will go down to the wire in the race for the 63 parliamentary seats.” [Jamaica Observer, Thursday, February 25, 2016]

    The JLP won 33 of the 63 seats, while the PNP won 30, which means (as the political pundits suggested) the elections were too close to call.

    There is a situation in Barbados where the integrity of the individuals who conduct opinion polls as well as the methodology used to solicit information for the poll and its authenticity, always comes under scrutiny by supporters, especially when the poll is not in favour of their party.

    Peter Wickham and CADRES, for example, have been criticized by both BLP and DLP; but recently particularly by the DLP and its supporters, since the results of his last few polls did not find favour with that party.

    Ironically, Wickham and CADRES were “the best thing since sliced bread” when his polls successfully predicted a win for the DLP in the 2008 general elections.


  21. chad99999 February 26, 2016 at 12:05 PM #

    Who knows the real story behind the big house Holness and his wife are building for themselves in Beverly Hills?


  22. Gabriel February 26, 2016 at 2:51 PM #

    Antigua,Guyana,Trinidad and now Jamaica have jettisoned the incumbent government and threw their lot in with the alternative party.I never understood the fascination with Simpson-Miller in a country known for its outstanding scholarship.I cannot find one thing that woman has done for Jamaica in the last 5 years and not even resurrecting PJ could clinch the election for the PNP.Holness has a mandate.Hopefully his policies would reverse the slide of the Jamaican dollar.


  23. ac February 27, 2016 at 6:57 PM #

    Editorial: The JLP’s high-wire act……Jamaica Gleaner

    Having won the Government in yesterday’s general election, Andrew Holness’ Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) administration has a tough, unenviable balancing act to accomplish. They have to deliver on their substantial, and potentially expensive, package of campaign promises, while delivering a balanced Budget and other tight fiscal targets if they are to avoid tensions with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), whose seal of approval remains important to Jamaica’s fragile economy.
    For there is little doubt that the JLP’s path to victory was carved primarily out of its undertaking to remove personal income tax from people who earn up to J$1.5 million, even as it removes all fees in secondary schools and maintains and extends free health care. The JLP has also raised the prospect of doubling the minimum wage, which would also impact the Government’s wage bill, although it hasn’t offered a timetable for this.
    For there is little doubt that the JLP’s path to victory was carved primarily out of its undertaking to remove personal income tax from people who earn up to J$1.5 million, even as it removes all fees in secondary schools and maintains and extends free health care. The JLP has also raised the prospect of doubling the minimum wage, which would also impact the Government’s wage bill, although it hasn’t offered a timetable for this.


    That means that the Government, even after last year’s reduction by a half of a percentage point, will have to run a primary balance of seven per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), rein in a national debt that, four years ago, was nearly 50 per cent of GDP, but which has since declined by more than 20 percentage points.
    The JLP insists that it can pay for its tax give-back ­ whose design and efficacy many people dispute ­ by a shuffling of existing taxes, and from the growth the measures will stimulate. The IMF, however, may well demand upfront, bankable evidence that all financing gaps are closed, including those that will be created by its other promises.
    Part of the background noise here will be the collapse, in 2010 after only one review, of the previous JLP Government’s agreement with the Fund and the fact that Audley Shaw, the incoming finance minister, was on the job at the time of that derailment.
    The bottom line is that while Mr Holness seeks to satisfy the expectations that are behind his mandate, his Government will have to calibrate carefully and not push Jamaica back into a situation of unsustainable debt, which would undermine the fiscal and macroeconomic stability over four years of hard, often painful, slog.

    The JLP promises sounds similar to the the political rhetoric often heard by the BLP yardfowls and the leadership


  24. David February 28, 2016 at 7:51 AM #

    There is a parallel story here somewhere:

    Payroll Of PNP Employees Exposed


  25. David February 28, 2016 at 9:08 AM #

    These close results in the Caribbean must surely be sending a message to the political class. All it does is to put a drag on government decision making.

    Now 32 JLP to 31 PNP…

    JUST IN: PNP’s Winston Green regains St Mary South Eastern by 9 votes following official count



  26. Hal Austin February 28, 2016 at 2:31 PM #

    What now for Caricom? Golding does not believe in the CCJ or Caricom.


  27. pieceuhderockyeahright February 28, 2016 at 3:30 PM #

    CARICOM will die on its own.

    Some things do not need any catalyst to kill it and it shall be so with that shadow an entity that exists solely to award expansive per diems to an elite crew of parasites.

    I am going to share a little wisdom with you that de ole man has gleaned over these fast passing years It can be found in Proverbs

    6 Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:

    7 Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler,

    8 Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.

    Carrion beetles like ants always have work for it is they that feed voraciously upon our decaying bodies in the graves we all will inhabit one day sooner or later.

    And like an economics theory of cadaver supply and demand one sees how once there is a steady supply of people, dead people, though there is some semblance to the still active cadavers at CARICOM, we, if wise observers of nature, would learn how to create similar ecosystems for Caricom to work

    The answer is quite simple really, bodies and the constant movement of said bodies across the short distances that divide this archipelago

    The dying Caricom could as its last pyrrhic act seek the assistance of the People’s Republic of China to secure four of its renown Zubr Class Hovercraft with the capacity for 300 mile, 2 hour trips at 60 knots.

    Imagine what that would mean for regional travel underwritten by the Chinese in its expanding aggressive bilateral aid programs.

    Movement of bodies across Caricom member states in rapid vessels supporting much needed intra regional travel.

    All we would have to guard against is guns and drugs being transported at the same time.

    Sorry I forgot that is already happening through the go fast boats and the transponders and the luxury cruisers that do the daily cruises and come back to Carlisle bay and offload heir cargo while the Guinea pig fishermen get caught with a bale or two off Consett Bay in St John to assuage the local authorities that their dragnets and night vision goggles are working


  28. David February 28, 2016 at 3:54 PM #

    An interesting link to Pat Hoyos this week.


  29. David February 29, 2016 at 5:27 AM #

    How will Holness be able to govern with such a slip majority? Will he ask Stuart for notes IF this is how we define governing a country?


  30. Artax February 29, 2016 at 1:06 PM #

    David February 29, 2016 at 5:27 AM #

    “How will Holness be able to govern with such a slip majority?”

    @ David

    A very interesting question, and even more so since the recount of votes has now verified that the JLP won the general elections by ONE seat.


  31. ac February 29, 2016 at 7:00 PM #

    Official ballots count not completed, but 32 seats declared to JLP, 31 PNP

    Director of Elections, Orrette Fisher says the Electoral Office of Jamaica has not completed its official count of ballots in the 2016 General Elections.
    Speaking at a press conference a short while ago, Fisher said up to 8:30 this morning, the EOJ had completed the count of 62 of the 63 constituencies.
    The Elections Director says 32 seats have been declared for the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and 31 seats for the People’s National Party (PNP)
    He says ballots are still being counted for the constituency of West St Thomas..
    Up to this morning 55 of the 156 ballot boxes had been counted.



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