News

Small crowd, little excitement as Parliament opens

BY KIMMO MATTHEWS Observer staff reporter matthewsk@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, April 04, 2014    

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THE usual large crowd and excitement associated with the ceremonial opening of Parliament was absent as only a small group of supporters from the country's two major political parties turned out to give their support to their political representatives.

"It is the signs of the times as people are frustrated with what is going on in the political circles; that is why only a few people come out," Kim Smith, a supporter of the Opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) told the Jamaica Observer.

"Things and times have gotten harder [and] this is a manifestation of the people's frustration why you [are] not seeing a lot of people," said Lloyd Brown, another JLP supporter.

Views expressed by Smith and Brown represented the overall sentiments shared by JLP supporters who had gathered to support Opposition MPs and senators marching to Gordon House.

The comments were, however, in contrast to those shared by the small group of governing People's National Party (PNP) supporters who cheered and danced upon the arrival of Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller.

"Them wrong to trouble Portia, them wrong," a group of women shouted as the prime minister led her team of MPs and senators to the House.

"Right now, the PNP has the country on the right track and we can't turn back. See, we pass all of the IMF (International Monetary Fund) tests; we are moving forward," said Courtney Smith, another supporter.

"Them must leave we prime minister alone. She trying her best, especially in these hard economic times," said another supporter.

The PNP supporters went 'wild' as Simpson Miller stopped to greet schoolchildren who gathered along the way.

"We want Portia, we want Portia," the children shouted as the adult supporters danced.

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