Some will say we have nothing to be proud of, but how can we as a nation have failed so badly, that at age 50 we have nothing to celebrate? I don't subscribe to the notion that at this age Jamaica has failed completely. We have made several missteps, but we have also made some great steps.
Both political parties must be lauded for the level of development that has taken place in Jamaica over the years, be it small or large. Our infrastructure has seen tremendous improvements; our social welfare has gone through many changes that in some way or form has impacted positively on the lives of Jamaicans.
Yes, crime is the main albatross around our necks stifling our potential, but have we sat idly by over the last 50 years and done nothing? No! The many taskforces that have been set up within the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) is one clear indication that the problems have been identified and some form of remedy is being introduced.
The importation of police officers from Scotland Yard to implement first world policing strategies and to strengthen the knowledge, skills and attitudes of our local law enforcement officers was a step in the right direction to rid our country of crime and violence.
Our financial sector is one of the most stable in the world. Despite its own debacle in the past, it has rebounded strongly and is showing signs of further improvements. Our stock market is on par with all other international stock markets; this is clearly something we can be proud of.
Our political system has seen a period of great stability, then fell into disrepute in the 1970s, but has since been showing signs of improvement. Can a political system ever be perfect? I say no. However, there are signs that it will get better.
Our judicial system, although slow, is of pre-eminent quality, so too our healthcare system that is sought after by people from some first world countries.
There are many more developments that prove we do have several things to celebrate in our 50th year as an Independent country. We can't ignore the fact that we do have challenges, but let's not forget the challenges that we have overcome.
Jamaica land we love has seen some times that may make it seem we don't love this rock, but in this 50th year let's reminisce on the positives and look at ways in which we can make the negatives non-existent for the next 50 years.
Llandilo, Sav PO