Chang predicts JLP will sweep St James

Western News

Chang predicts JLP will sweep St James

Thursday, January 16, 2020

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MONTEGO BAY, St James — General secretary of the ruling Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Dr Horace Chang has expressed confidence that his party will win the five parliamentary seats up for grabs in the parish of St James in the next general election, which political pundits believe will be held this year.

The JLP currently has control of four of the five seats — St James North Western, St James Central, St James East Central and St James West Central — but Chang is predicting that councillor for the Cambridge Division, Homer Davis, who is also mayor of Montego Bay, will defeat political neophyte, Dr Walton Small, the People's National Party's standard-bearer in the St James South seat.

Incumbent, St James South MP, Derrick Kellier, who indicated that he will not contest the next general election due to ill health, has held the seat since 1989.

But Kellier's margin of victory in recent elections has significantly dwindled. In fact, he defeated Davis to hold on to the constituency for a seventh term by a mere 53 votes in the 2016 General Elections, after a magisterial recount.

Many political observers have been watching the constituency closely and expect it to be a battleground seat.

“...And everybody knows that this is another year where we will have to go through an election period. We will go through and the team (JLP team in St James) I am sure, will continue, and I expect to be more uccessful, as I expect, before I make my plans for departure, that Mr Davis who having established himself as mayor, and as the best mayor around, will now join me in Parliament to make himself one of the best MPs for South St James,” Dr Chang stated.

Chang, who is minister of national security and the St James North Western Member of Parliament, paid tribute to Davis for his outstanding leadership of the St James Municipal Corporation.

“This parish council [St James Municipal Corporation] has done a lot of work you know. In fact, the best way to look at this parish council, without being partisan, but many times I am asked by individuals what was happening before this mayor and his team took over the parish council because they do so much work… roads, sidewalks, a lot of work being done, and they are getting almost the same amount of money as before, which tells me that they are focused on serving the people of the community. And I want to commend them,” Chang remarked.

He was making his remarks during a ceremony for the renaming of Quebec Avenue in St James the Dr Horace Chang Boulevard, last week.

The thoroughfare runs from Ironshore to Norwood in St James North Western.

For his part, Davis expressed pleasure that a commitment to rename the former Quebec Avenue to Dr Horace Chang Boulevard has been fulfilled during his stewardship of the municipality.

“On behalf of the councillors of the municipality, I express profound happiness in being able to deliver today (last Thursday) on a commitment…that of affixing the name of Dr Horace Chang to this roadway…a thoroughfare which he conceptualised and built for the wonderful people of St James in general and the community of Norwood in particular,” said Davis.

He noted that Chang has been a mentor to many and a political father to a number of former and serving politicians including himself, Senator Charles Sinclair and Member of Parliament Heroy Clarke.

“This honour is being bestowed on someone who is truly deserving…he is a father to many, a mentor, a friend, a true servant of Jamaica, a friend of Jamaica and Jamaicans, a forward thinker, a visionary and indeed a very dedicated son of St James and our beautiful island, “ said Mayor Davis.

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