Letters to the Editor

We need more ‘Butch’ Stewarts

Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart.

Dear Editor, I am comforted to know that we have people like Gordon “Butch” Stewart who can put country above self. I wish we had more people like him. His suggestion to give half of the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) money to assist the Government in taking Jamaica out of the rut we a ... Read More


Toward reducing crime
Dear Editor, “Fear follows crime, and is it punishment.” — Voltaire According to ... Read More

Customers stand outside the former SLB location August will still be happy; SLB safe
Dear Editor, It is in response to the letter ‘SLB cut almost brought me to tears’ scrip ... Read More

Respect for the rule of law
Dear Editor, Lord Anthony Gifford, in his public piece ‘Human rights and the Tambourine Army& ... Read More

Can Phillips fix it?

Friday, March 24, 2017    

Opposition Spokesman on Finance Dr Peter Phillips making his budget debate presentation in Parliament yesterday. (Photo: Joseph Wellington)

Dear Editor, On Sunday, March 26, 2017 Peter Phillips will take over the leadership of the People’s National Party (PNP) but, like Prime Minister Andrew Holness, Phillips will be nothing new — same old. Dr Peter Phillips was general secretary of the PNP from 1991 to 1994. Many say he was parachuted by then leader Michael Manley. He ran for chairmanship of the party in 1992 and was whipped by ‘Chairman for Life’ Robert Pickersgill. He was vice-president of the PNP from ... Read More

‘Nuh mash up Champs’

Thursday, March 23, 2017    

The annual Inter-Secondary Schools Boys’ and Girls’ Championships, otherwise known as Champs, is the pinnacle of high school athletics in Jamaica.

Dear Editor, “Mi a beg onnu, nuh mash up Champs,” which has been described elsewhere as “arguably the highest quality Jamaican product of international standard — a veritable oasis of excellence”. I will always consider winning the Class 2 discus event at Champs in 1959 for the victorious Jamaica College (JC) team as the greatest achievement in my life. I know Michael Clarke very well from his days at JC when, under his guidance, we won Champs for five years. Cl ... Read More

Portia’s legacy: She did no harm

Thursday, March 23, 2017    

Portia Simpson Miller

Dear Editor, It’s been said that comparisons are odious. But before the sun sets on the discourse about Portia Simpson Miller’s legacy may I offer a perspective which may be somewhat different from current chatter. If one were to judge her solely on the basis of what good she did during her 40-plus years, even her fiercest boosters would have to admit that her contribution — even such as stabilising the economy — pales alongside those of Michael Manley’s social po ... Read More

Welcome reduction in SLB interest rate

Thursday, March 23, 2017    

Dear Editor, During the past few weeks the 2017/18 national budget debate has found its way into the conversations of most Jamaicans. Labelling it as a ‘journey to prosperity’ Finance Minister Audley Shaw, in his presentation, indicated that the development of our human resource must become a priority, with education as the vehicle to reach this destination. According to the government website www.JamStats.gov.jm, the gross enrolment rate at the tertiary level has been steadily de ... Read More

Tourism product is all Jamaica

Thursday, March 23, 2017    

Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart

Dear Editor, In response to Omar Robinson’s comments in the Jamaica Observer, words to the effect of “keep the TEF separate from Consolidated Fund”, I must add a few points. Robinson, who is currently president of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA), opposes the use of the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) outside of tourism. On the contrary, I believe the TEF should benefit all Jamaica, we are the reason tourists visit. The TEF Act was passed in 2004 and is funded ... Read More

Garfield Higgins is right!

Thursday, March 23, 2017    

Michael Manley

Dear Editor, If Michael Manley’s devotees expected him to return to the socialist path in 1989 he immediately disabused them of that notion by stating emphatically, “The agenda of the 70s is dead.” He had been a great dream merchant but he had come awake unlike Hugh Dunbar, who criticises Garfield Higgins, and unlike the other Manley devotees, like Lance Neita and Michael Burke. The socialist approach to political economy is fundamentally unsound because government’s co ... Read More

Tax break or burden?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017    

Dear Editor, It is that time of the year again when Jamaicans brace for the worst. It is a time at which Jamaicans have got accustomed to being sad. A time when the trust is betrayed. The budget debate is not over in the country’s Parliament and already the mountain of taxes is hard to climb. The Government has employed an underhanded tactic of indirect taxes that is turning out to be worse than direct taxes. They made sure that the taxes were strategic, as there is no escaping them. Thi ... Read More

Pay the BPO tax

Wednesday, March 22, 2017    

Dear Editor, I totally support the Government’s 12.5 per cent tax on the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector. There are labour, overhead and other synergistic savings for these entities’ corporate structure when they locate here. In theory, if they are from the US, where the corporate tax rate is about 39 per cent, they would receive a tax credit from the US revenue authorities for the tax paid in Jamaica at 12.5 per cent (39 per cent less the 12.5 per cent) and pay the diffe ... Read More

Portia’s parting shot

Wednesday, March 22, 2017    

Portia Simpson Miller

Dear Editor, It was a hard-hitting, yet respectful final budget debate presentation befitting the exit of a former prime minister whose unyielding concern and advocacy for the welfare of the less fortunate in our society is etched in her lengthy political career. Of course, “Sista P” is entitled to speak on behalf of those among us from whom she sprang. She is also entitled to join forces with an artiste such as Bounty Killer in speaking up on behalf of the poor. So much so her sho ... Read More

Please, fix Spanish Town Road!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017    

Smoke billows over
the city of Kingston
from a fire at
Riverton dump.

Dear Editor, I wish to register my disgust at the poor condition of Spanish Town Road. The road is riddled with potholes and many who traverse the roadway now realise that, after going through the stoplight at the Weymouth Drive turn-off, your safest and best bet is to keep well right on the three-lane roadway as much as possible. Unfortunately, for me, I learnt this the hard way recently, after bursting both tyres on the left side of my car, having connected with a fearsome crater in the vici ... Read More



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