'Here we go again'

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014    

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A fresh round of demand from the Opposition to scrap the proposed tax on bank withdrawals have been greeted with mix reaction from Jamaica Observer online readers. The Opposition has spoken out against the tax ever since it was announced by Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips as part of measures to plug a hole in the 2014/2015 budget. On Sunday, at the meeting of Jamaica Labour Party Area Council One in St Andrew, Opposition spokesman on finance and planning Audley Shaw reiterated the calls. Here are some edited reactions to the story published yesterday:


Yes! Now we are seeing an opposition.


The Prime Minister's own words: "What I understand from the minister's ammm things today to us at Cabinet. The banks take their charges as well, that's like the bank charge not like. I think some persons believe that if you go the ATM say four times for the month, you will have to pay and my understanding is the I think the minister himself (emphasis on "minister himself") needs to explain this to the public they can understand exactly what it is about." Portia Simpson Miller speaking to CVM TV Garfield Burford about the tax on withdrawal.


@CHUCK EMANUEL THE Original: Are you serious? ...This is Jamaica's Prime Minister! Sounds like she cannot put two cohesive sentences together. Shame! Sometimes I do not feel sorry for Jamaica, them deserve what them get. This is who Jamaica vote fah! SHAME, SHAME, SHAME.

CHUCK EMANUEL 1st Original

@CHUCK EMANUEL THE Original: What is the Opposition prepared to do, give speeches, and arrange to march with flags?


Solid Argument, Mr Shaw. I will not continue to bank my hard-earned money in the bank if this becomes law on June 1, 2014 or anytime thereafter.


Here we go again, taking a serious issue to a political crowd. Mr Shaw, just a reminder, the same knife that stick sheep, stick goat.


We badly need statesmen/stateswomen who can provide the kind of leadership this country requires at this time. The country cannot afford to have any kind of social unrest at this time, therefore, I am totally against Mr Shaw repeating Mr Holness' ill-advised ...threat before a partisan crowd.



Maybe you should read the article again. The problem is, your love for the PNP is killing this country. If Mr Phillips wants to impose a tax on withdrawals, he has to show us that the Government is making sacrifices too. How about some cuts in Government and salary reduction, remove all the consultants and show us that you care? You are fine if the good Dr tax us to death. Wheel and come again!


I don't agree with this tax. However, what is all the belly-aching for, considering that Jamaican public, in general, disregard, or literally throw away any money less than the fifty cent note? Considering that this is suppose to be a "penny" tax, all that the government needed to do was walk from Kingston to MoBay, picking up "red money", and other coins, in order to find the two billion needed to meet the budget. In fact, they will surpass

that figure.


What does the Leader of the Opposition and Audley Shaw mean by, 'remove the tax, or else'? These are irresponsible statements, unbecoming of any leader or potential leaders of the country. There has to be an alternative civil discourse to address issues. Attempting to incite civil disobedience and unrest is not the way to go about solving the issues facing Jamaica.


Let's say this tax is not withdrawn and also let's say people start pulling out their money. With less money in the banking system, will we see an increase in borrowing rates given that there is less money available? And if that happens what will that do to the economy that's 'poised' for growth?


No threats please! Neither from Government nor Opposition. Let's engage in reasonable intelligent dialogue, both sides, and try to find a middle ground.


Neither of them impresses me. Phillips is a solid worker but allowed himself to be the point man of a public relations disaster. He foolishly allowed himself to be spouting party-line "pro-poor" propaganda about no new taxes (on "di poor", it turns out). He should have come out and talked with the public about the economic war we are in and try for some sort of consensus. Apart from that, he has little or no charisma.

Shaw has much charisma, but a bark and no bite. If he were given the opportunity to run the country tomorrow morning he would spend his entire term complaining that why he could not succeed is the bad hand left to him by the PNP. That's the difference between a top dog country like the USA and Jamaica.


Mr Holness and Mr Shaw need to be more responsible in making statements or threat of "Or Else". It sends a bad message abroad to investors and tourists coming to Jamaica. They hearing this kind of talk don't know what to expect and will also stay away from our island. This sounds like a take it to the streets thing. Jamaica cannot afford any bad publicity at this time.


Remember my words that this withdrawal tax will increase crime; people will keep their money at home because they don't want to pay the withdrawal tax and thieves will be breaking in their homes trying to get

that money.





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