We all need to stand against crime

Monday, February 04, 2019

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Among the unfortunate elements of the human condition is the certainty of bad news from time to time.

So it was that for many Jamaicans what should have been a quiet, tranquil Saturday morning was cruelly disturbed by news of the murder of Member of Parliament (MP) for Portland Eastern Dr Lynvale Bloomfield at his home in Passley Gardens, close to Port Antonio, Portland.

Given Jamaica's long-standing high murder rate people have become inured to such happenings. It seems to this newspaper that the essential difference here was that Dr Bloomfield, who sat on the Opposition People's National Party (PNP) side in Parliament, was not only well known, he was the elect of the people.

The majority of voters in Portland Eastern had chosen him to represent them and their interests. In effect, Dr Bloomfield, on being elected, became an extension of the people of Portland Eastern in the nation's highest forum.

The various reports are that Dr Bloomfield, a medical doctor by profession, commanded the respect and goodwill of those with whom he came in contact.

By taking his life, his murderer or murderers not only showed wanton disregard for Dr Bloomfield but total contempt for the people of Portland Eastern.

In circumstances such as these, as the tributes flow, it is always useful to pay keen attention to what's said by the deceased's political opponents. In that respect we find the comments from Prime Minister Andrew Holness and MP for Portland Western Mr Daryl Vaz most instructive.

Said Mr Holness: “Dr Bloomfield was a very gentle and humble man, and one of the nicest human beings I have ever encountered in politics.”

And Mr Vaz is reported as saying that Dr Bloomfield was “a gentle, humble human being. One of the most likeable MPs in Parliament. We had a pact to put aside politics and work together in the interest of the people and parish of Portland”. Mr Vaz claimed the two had worked together right up to the time of Dr Bloomfield's death.

Approaching press time yesterday there was no word from police investigators as to what could have caused anyone to take Dr Bloomfield's life. However, reports appear to suggest that the parliamentarian may have been killed by a person or persons close to him.

Whatever may have been the motive, we are at one with Opposition leader and president of the PNP Dr Peter Phillips that neither Dr Bloomfield nor any other person should die in that fashion.

This newspaper joins all well-thinking Jamaicans in urging the police to leave no stone unturned in the search for the person or persons responsible.

Also, those who may have information of what happened need to tell the police. Individually and collectively Jamaicans need to stand against crime and all forms of evil.

On behalf of all our readers and the wider Jamaican family, this newspaper extends condolence to Dr Bloomfield's relatives, constituents, and friends.

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