Why JA Should Try Phillips

An Item in the Financial Times titled “IMF’s Outrageous, Improbably Successful Jamaican Programme (Pt 1),”  for me is proof  in support of arguments that it was neither Nigel Clarke, Andrew Holness, nor his band of deceitful and corrupt corp that brought about the change that Jamaica needed and sustained. The prosperity they claim to have brought with them actually all happened elsewhere and without any real input of theirs, seeing they were in Opposition when it was shaped and executed.

Opposition Leader Peter Phillips, then Minister of Finance and to all intents and purpose, Quasi Deputy PM (our Constitution doesn’t allow for one), was the main architect and only he can lay claim to not just the groundwork but eventual implementation and success at this acclaimed level.

Provisions that had been made to sustain our recovered economy, plus a major advance  paydown on our int’l debt, have carried through for years, (as it was designed to) even though they (PNP) demitted office before it all paid dividends by trickling down to effectively impact the local people and the little man in business.

It was in fact present Opposition Leader Peter Phillips, under a very charismatic leader, Portia Simpson Miller, the people’s champion, who led that charge and sustained it after repeated failures of the JLP


The JLP got a job already done. They are presently enjoying what was an already baked cake. They had to do no mixing, stirring nor shaking in the baking. All they needed to do, and claimed/admitted they would do, by none other than then Opposition Leader Andrew Holness (and publicly), was to sustain and maintain.

The JLP didn’t then have and still seems to have no clue as to how to strategise and structure towards financial longevity and eventual wealth. They have to date co-opted so called financial “gurus” (one of which is reportedly wanted by the FBI for banking crimes committed in another country, where he was entrusted with affairs of their national bank) despite which they still cannot find an edge to add to what the last regime left behind.

Should I say a disjointed and dishonest lot?

Add to this, the slew of reported pre-election promised payment of sums of money by them for voters to stay home on Election day to gain the ascendency, which to my knowledge have never been paid to anyone so conned. This seems to be all in a day’s work for our present Prime Minister Holness and his foot soldiers. If one does not come out to condemn a foul practice of people in their charge, but in fact embrace it, they are as guilty as hell of that offence. If they did it once, they will do it again. He continues to lie to the people, or simply go into hiding when his kitchen gets too hot and then reappears when the smoke seems to have cleared somewhat and continue on as though nothing happened. This constitutes more than just indifference, its deceit. Deceit is a form of lying. If lying was a growth hormone, such as he would be larger than life.

The JLP has been seeking to take the credit for others’ hard work and dedication, while further seeking chances to hoodwink the people, using cunning, wily and ill advised allocation of public funds and gerrymandering to pull the wool over the people’s eyes once again. The PetroJam and CMU scandals are typical as well as very topical. The usage of millions of dollars out of public funds to do piecework, where only JLP personnel are employed also is.

Annmarie Vaz, a ‘green’ politician seeking election and getting approval to draw down on of millions of dollars to do work in a constituency in which she had no constitutional or legal right to access public funds, while the actual MP, deceased Dr. Bloomfield, was denied a drawdown on those very same funds to which he had full constitutional right still cannot be justified.

Many believe his public outcry about this singular issue was the reason for his violent and untimely death. These are just a few of the quotable cards of corruption played by this JLP regime and seemingly protected by Mr. Holness, who himself still cannot adequately declare his personal assets to the people.


The Article by The Financial Times, is an expose` of IMF personnel and others in the financial loop, detailing how our miraculous recovery was achieved while they were stumped and stymied that PNP governance actually pulled it off.

Finally! A new success module they could sell to nations in trouble. Yes, little Jamaica came up with financial ore when the greater world had basically given up on the possibility, thanks to the genius of a then unknown Dr. Peter Phillips.

We are talking about some countries, in comparison to which Jamaica is but a dot in the ocean.

The PNP wore large boots internationally, with then PM Simpson Miller being named to People’s Magazine’s list and ranking high as most influential and popular people globally, while Dr Phillips was lauded by the financial world, even being honoured to the extent of  being asked to ring the closing bell on a record bullish day on Wall Street. Being asked to do so is an honour hardly ever given to a foreigner, much less someone from poor poverty riven, ‘teeny-weeny’ Jamaica. That was respect right there for his financial acumen. Dr Phillips is now easily recognisable in the global financial community in a positive way.  This is definitely not at all a bad thing for Jamaica at this time.

The thought of Jamaica was contemptible to financiers, major investors and entrepreneurs up to that point.

The IMF by their own admission, reentered the fray when the last PNP regime came to power. They expected more of the same and worse, looking disaster in the eye after repeated dishonesty and treachery by the JLP;  that is, until one USA based influential daughter of the soil, Congresswoman Maxine Waters, following her heart out of her love for the Jamaican people, determinedly organised a march on the IMF office in Washington alongside a hopeful Jamaican delegation. She forced them to take notice and get re-involved with a determined new PNP Jamaican government fighting for its people.

Together, with a united leadership, they convinced the IMF to take another chance on Jamaica, though our record with them was so poor, especially after the dereliction of duty to pay back by then Prime Minister Bruce Golding, which it is speculated he did more out of dissatisfaction with the Dudus extradition proceedings than actual disability to pay back…something. Whatever the reason, the JLP regime reneged on its promise to pay and put us in a financial cesspool. We seemed to have no respite. We were not just shunned but seemingly despised by the global financial community.

Jamaica needs Dr Phillips right back to pick up the slack and run with it. Who better to do it than the one who started it all and brought it almost to fruition? He was thwarted when those relevant reins were forcibly wrested from his hand by the Election Day failure of the Jamaican people to see things in black and white. A people who bought into the JLP’s temporarily rose tinted glasses that lied to them. It now appears those visions were about prosperity for Mr. Holness, ministers of his party and their cronies and at any cost. The people, based on present trajectory, were simply an after though and a means to an end.

If Peter Phillips, only a finance minister at that time, achieved so much that it is still sending ripples in the economy, what could he now achieve if given the reins of this country and thereby have full authority and autonomy to devise and implement economic strategies?


I think the Jamaican people should give him the chance to show what he is capable of. I feel confident that he can even surpass what he has done to date.

I personally may not be overly fond of him because of the nature of some of his past non financial mistakes, but that does not stop me from wishing only the best for my country and as far ahead as I can see, Phillips seems to be the person who best fits the role of Jamaica’s saviour right now.

.Jamaicans need to know what they are buying into and stop practicing licky-licky politics.  They have added to their own suffering because of this. Many now wish they had thought further ahead than they did last time out, when they accepted promises that did not come with a tangible promissory note and therefore not enforceable in a court of law to exact payment.

I am making note here that I have NEVER accepted payment from any entity to take sides politically. I dissociate myself from partisan politics right now and write as a concerned Jamaican who wishes to see some semblance of respectability and glory come back to my beautiful country. I declare this is from my heart. I call it as I see it.

Can’t wait to see what (Part 2) of the article has to offer.

By Ava Ramdeen – a former staff writer and subeditor of The Daily Gleaner ,The Jamaica Daily News, and Caribbean Life News in New York, as well as Managing Editor of the Caribbean Media Network 1995. Email feedback to [email protected] and [email protected]

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