For the JLP, prosperity is a donkey says Golding
People's National Party President Mark Golding

KINGSTON, Jamaica- Opposition Leader Mark Golding has stated that for the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Government, “prosperity is a donkey.”

“Yes, their “hee-haw” concept of prosperity is a beast of burden - a low-tech solution for modern day problems,” Golding said mockingly on Sunday as he addressed the 85th annual conference of the People’s National Party (PNP) at the National Arena.

While he was talking about the state of the economy, which he said, was not benefitting most Jamaicans, Golding was also taking a jab at Prime Minister Andrew Holness for gifting a donkey to a female farmer from Cornwall district in St Elizabeth in July.

Dionne Blake had complained to the prime minister that she was having difficulty moving her produce because of the poor state of the road in her area. The animal, which was handed over by Agriculture Minister Floyd Green and Minister of State in the Ministry of Science, Energy, Telecommunications and Transport, J C Hutchinson, was named “Prosperity by Blake. "From poverty to prosperity " is a popular JLP slogan.

READ: Female farmer gets donkey promised by PM

As far as Golding is concerned, “the JLP’s jackass named 'Prosperity' is symbolic of the “low wage, low tech, low growth economy" in which Jamaica is trapped.

“But the people are crying out for more. They want to see this country moving in the right direction; they want to see positive change. They want opportunities to step up inna life, and to see hope for a better life for themselves and their families,” he said.

Golding outlined that the economic turnaround of the Jamaican economy started with former Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller with Dr Peter Phillips as the minister of finance.

“So successful was this effort, that in just 10 years Jamaica’s debt in comparison to the size of the economy (what economists call the debt-to-GDP ratio), has been cut in half, from 147 per cent in 2013 to 78 per cent in 2023,” he said.

“But as great an achievement as that is, it is not enough. While things look good on the books, we are not balancing people’s lives. Our economy is not delivering prosperity for the majority of our people.”

The PNP president argued that since getting back to where it was before the pandemic, the economy is once again hardly growing.

“It is still delivering mainly low-paying jobs. The education system is failing our children. Our society is plagued by high levels of violent crime,” he said.

He noted that thousands of tertiary trained students graduate each year having made the investment in preparing themselves for the workforce, but are facing the daunting prospect of an economy that is only offering low-paying jobs that do not meet their aspirations for personal advancement.

“Our people want peace and security in our communities. They want a society based on social justice, where every Jamaican is respected and treated as a valued citizen of this country. Jamaicans need a government that will begin to tackle the deep problems that are holding Jamaica back, the challenges that are dimming the flame of hope for a better tomorrow. No more of the same! Time come to move in the right direction," said Golding.

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