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PM lauds JDF for role in advancing HOPE programme

Sunday, September 24, 2017

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MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica (JIS) — Prime Minister Andrew Holness, has lauded the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) for its role in advancing the Government’s Housing, Opportunity, Production and Employment (HOPE) Programme.

This, he said, through the JDF’s new Jamaica National Service Corps (JNSC) recruitment and training modality, which he noted represents an alternative in the selection process for future soldiers as well as a channel for spreading the military’s core values.

“Securing our nation must be a multi-pronged strategy (and) we must recognize the different elements that are important for national security, nation building and development. The JNSC is one such manifestation of this strategy,” the prime minister stated.

He was speaking at the passing out ceremony for recruits of the JNSC’s Intake 1701 at the JDF’s training camp in Moneague, St Ann yesterday.

Holness said it was incumbent on the society to empower its young men and women to assume their role as valuable contributors to Jamaica, noting that “the social issues that we are grappling with (inclusive of) crime, corruption, domestic violence and indiscipline impact our economic development.”

Against this background, the prime minister emphasized the need to empower persons, particularly the youth, to overcome these challenges, pointing out that the JNSC was aimed at helping them “to create a better future for themselves and their families and, indeed, the entire Jamaica.”

Holness, who praised the graduates for making the right decision to join the programme, pointed out that they were now equipped with the requisite skills to pursue careers in either the JDF or other areas of interest.

“By making the decision to enlist, you have created endless possibilities for yourselves. It is a….moment for you (to) be proud of your achievements,” he stated.

Holness, who has portfolio responsibility for the JDF, further told the graduates that as “newly minted soldiers”, they were now standard bearers of the JNSC ethos.

“You are now instilled with those core values of the JDF. I encourage you to keep these values as your personal mantra as they will shape your decisions, your careers, and your overall success in life,” he added.

The 234 graduates, who were recruited three months ago, are the first batch of trainees under the JNSC programme, which is the outcome of the Government’s proposed diversification and expansion of the JDF role in the Administration’s pursuit of generating increased social and economic growth and strengthened national security.

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