Thu | Jun 1, 2023

Reforming the Government

Published:Wednesday | August 10, 2022 | 12:09 AM


Earlier this week we watched, on TVJ, two former leaders, PJ Patterson and Bruce Golding, declaring that we should have got rid of the queen long ago. Except, neither one of them did so.

We do not need a governor general. Nor do we need a president, although we could change from prime minister to president if we wished.

What we do need is the post of prime minister or president to be voted for at large, not on a whoever wins the most member of parliament (MP) seats. We need to allow new parties to form, whose members can form part of the governance structure.

We also need term limits and a fixed election schedule – two terms for a prime minister and four terms for an MP. Make the MP actually reside in the area he/she represents, and no husband running one part of the parish and the wife running the other part.

We should also get away from appointing senators but instead have them elected, but for seven years, with a three-term limit.

All our elected officials should be on term limits so that they do not get comfortable in office. If one wishes to continue serving his/her country at the end of the term limit, then they can vie for another role in the governance structure.

As for getting rid of the queen and the governor general, if you put it to a vote, include term limits, voting for senators, fixed election dates and fixed terms for each position, then we will see overwhelming support. But if we make it look like we are trading the queen for some Jamaican ruler for life or for an unlimited time, I do not believe the people will support it. Because we want open, just politics; not politricks.