Chesterfield bridge and the new times

Chesterfield bridge and the new times

Friday, October 18, 2019

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Dear Editor,

Who will ever forget the image of barefooted prime minister of Jamaica, in October 2017, wading through a river to get to a community in St Mary South Eastern to ask the people to give the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) candidate Norman Dunn the nod over the People's National Party's (PNP) Shane Alexis? It was, arguably, the most iconic set of photographs taken on that election campaign.

And, when compared with Dr Peter Phillips flying into the constituency via helicopter, the contrast could not have been more stark.

The result of his experience was a promise by Andrew Holness to get the people of Chesterfield a bridge to help their circumstances. And the rest is history.

Fast-forward to Wednesday, October 16, 2019 and the prime minister was back in Chesterfield to open that bridge. And from all indications the people are immensely proud; and so they should.

While the people of Chesterfield are celebrating, there is a more fundamental point to be observed — the stark difference between the PNP and the JLP.

The PNP formed a Government of pipeline promises, while the JLP is a Government of getting things done in reality.

The two couldn't have being more different.

Who remembers the infamous “Jamaica will be pothole free by 2003”? It never happened.

What we are seeing is the fundamental transformation of a country in which governments made promises and never delivered. This country cannot remain in a state of flux as it used to. We are used to hearing grand announcements and never see them becoming reality. The bridge in Chesterfield is telling us extremely loudly that the times have changed.

It matters a great deal, because if we are to get anywhere as a nation we've got to have a Government in place that understands reality and the means to translate aspirations to reality. A Government that understands the needs of the people and sets about satisfying them.

If you ask the people of Chesterfield, I am sure they will agree.

Fabian Lewis

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