3 KIDS murdered in 72hrs and still not a word from the Prime Minister !

Just last week I reported that the British Prime Minister, who was in France on an official visit, immediately returned to Britain, when he got word that a British citizen ( A soldier) was murdered.

On his return he immediately hosted a press conference where he condemned the dastardly act.

Fast forward to Jamaica where 3 kids were brutally murdered in less than 72 hrs and still not a word of outrage and reassurance to the family of the slain kids by the Jamaican Prime Minister.

Don’t tell me crap that the Minister with responsibility for children has already spoken, we need to hear from the persons who is supposed to be in charge of the affairs of the country.

Sad, sad indeed.

I rest my case as it relates to how we deal with human lives here in Jamaica.

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon

Courtesy : Jamaica Observer

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The entire country is failing, let’s focus on that, can we ?

There is a tendency in this country to focus on the peripheral issues and avoid serious debate and analysis of the real issues facing Jamaica.

If we want a particular outcome, our policy makers aided by a largely lazy media, (who only shows up and press  conferences to be feted with BS), throws out stuff into the open and like piranhas in the Amazon, we all swarm and devour it until its all done.

We are given bait and before we know it, we are reeled in at the end of a line and wondered what the heck happened, but once again it would have been too late.

There is a saying in an Eastern Caribbean country that goes like this ” Fish get caught by their mouth”.  (Meaning gullible people often get caught by bait.)

We speak for example about our failing education system and before you know it the discussion is all  about, who takes what from whom and who is a mongrel dog and who is injected by cocaine.

Lost in all of this, is the only thing that should be important at this time and its how do we put together a comprehensive plan to overhaul  the entire educational system, to produce a particular outcome.

The first step therefore  ( as a country) is to decide on what kind of outcome/output do we want at the end of the educational system, but first we ought to decide, what constitutes the end.

Is the end determined by a particular age, or is the ended considered to be at the secondary level?

If its at the secondary level then at what grade or sets of grades?

Given we have Technical High Schools, Regular High School, Secondary High Schools, Junior High School, the outcomes will be different, but there must be some minimal expectations for everyone who leaves this system at whatever age or grade or whatever criteria we choose to use at that stage.

I truly believe that we must move away from using final exam results in terms on number of subjects passed to determine success or failure of our students and the education system and instead move towards a tiered points system .

Education must be tailored towards teaching students the ability to think and not about passing exams. What is very clear to me is that attaining  12 subjects at grade one is not a testament to academic achievement and is not a measure of brilliance as many of us has been lead to believe.  This fallacy is being passed unto  too many of our students , who get the idea that they are “bright” and this is certainly not the case.

In fact many of these so called bright students fail at the tertiary level and a large percentage who make in through and graduate, are unable to translate their newly attained degree into making any fundamental and/or meaningful  improvements in the business they are employed to. They are not independent thinkers, they cannot work without supervision, they lack baisc skills to look at data, make analysis and develop plans to address the short coming identified.

If one should carefully look at what is taking place today and I spoke to this before, we have more persons today employed with Double first degrees, single and double masters and in some cases Phd’s,  but Jamaica’s economic performances has gotten worse every single year, why?

This to me is a clear indication that the current focus of the education system is deeply flawed and has to be totally redesigned.

The question is who is going to be doing this ?

While I dedicated most of my comments to education, its clear to everyone that education is only one of those measures used to determine the performance of the country and so let me once again just list a few other areas in which we are failing.

  1. The justice system is failing
  2. The health services is failing
  3. National security system is failing
  4. We are failing to prevent and solve crimes
  5. We are failing in our competitiveness rating
  6. We are failing on the transparency and corruption index.
  7. We are failing in the manufacturing sector
  8. We are failing in the agricultural sector, we cannot feed ourselves
  9. We are failing in our productivity levels
  10. We are failing to protect the weak and the poor
  11. We are failing on almost every single economic performance index
  12. We are failing in our social and ethical behaviour
  13. We are failing even at failure.

The above my friends are symptomatic of a failed state and that is where we are today.

So any debate about any singular part of the system is an effort in futility and as such we need to focus on the larger picture and stop allowing those in the media and government to “pigeon hole ” us down a particular path to satisfy there own agenda’s.

Can we therefore have some serious discussion on why we are failing in most areas and what needs to be done to turn this situation around.

What was former Prime Minister PJ Patterson doing in Ethiopia ?

Was PJ Patterson trying to grab the limelight from current Prime Minister Portia Simspon Miller and did the GOJ foot the bill for the former Prime Minister’s  visit to Ethiopia as part of 50th Anniversary of African Unity ?

Watch the video.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGIuRO2PNIM

 

 

PNP Government seeks to remove some powers from the OCG !

Portia Simpson Miller had indicated that her Government was going to strengthen the offices of the OCG , however her government is instead moving to weaken the offices of the OCG.

What a deceptive Government!

The person leading the charge to amend the act is no other than Dr Run wid it, surprize, surprize.

Will the Jamaican public say no, hell no it’s the PNP and with them anything goes.

This is yet another troubling move by this government and I am really getting worried by the way they are acting, its really troubling.

 

Tanzania to receive science, math teachers from Jamaica

Given the very disparaging comments being made against to teachers and the failure of our educational system, how does one juxtapose this vs Jamaica “exporting” teachers to Tanzania?

The government of Jamaica has agreed to provide science and mathematics teachers as well as athletics coach to teach and revive the sport in Tanzanian schools in the specified fields.

In a statement issued yesterday by the Presidential Directorate of Communications, the agreement between Tanzania and Jamaica was reached on Sunday in a meeting between President Jakaya Kikwete and the Prime Minister of Jamaica, Portia Simpson Miller, when they met in Addis Ababa during the celebration to mark the 50 years anniversary of the African Union (AU), formerly the Organisation of African Union (OAU)

 

http://www.ippmedia.com/frontend/index.php?l=55261

 

Also in the news

Tanzania: Jamaica to Offer Athletics Coach

JAMAICA has promised to provide Tanzania with an athletics coach as its assistance towards the development of the sport in the country.

http://allafrica.com/stories/201305291041.html

 

IMF acheived in few months what Jamaicans could not in “donkey” years

Amidst the “mongrel” and “injection with cocaine” furor which has dominated the media landscape for the better part of 3 days, there is a issue which I would not allow to escape my attention.

BTW I was advised to stay out of the JTA/PNP issue because that is a dog fight between comrades 🙂

Anyway as I read through the Gleaner today I saw an article, which I am not sure many persons will pay much attention to, but you know me, I will tend to look in a direction where most persons would not look.

The headline was as follows and the first paragraph followed

Legislation For IMF Requirements Could Delay Other Drafts

AN AGGRESSIVE legislative agenda to satisfy structural benchmarks under the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) extended fund facility could delay other critical pieces of legislation being crafted by the Government for promulgation this parliamentary year.

Another key point for me was the following:

Golding advised that there were about 12 pieces of legislation linked to the IMF agreement to be passed during this legislative year.

I will be taking a look at the letter of intent and the program on which the GOJ and the IMF has a agreed on to see what those pieces of legislation are.

Of interest to me is the ease at which the Minister of Finance was summarily stripped of one of his functions, which was the approval of waivers  and the  subsequent creation of an act to address waivers under what is now termed the charities act.

The post of Minister of  Finance is a very powerful post in the Jamaican Government and the holder of this office wields tremendous power, which can be used to make or break a business, yet in one swipe the IMF has limited his power via legislative changes.

This begs the question,  what power resides in the hands of the ordinary citizens of Jamaica to bring about new legislation that will seek to not only limit the power than resides in the hands of any minister , but also bring to parliament legislation’s, which when implement can bring about positive changes in Jamaica.

It also raise another and even more poignant question, are Jamaicans really interested in being part of the process to agitate for and help to bring about those legislations that can improve governance in Jamaica?

The IMF has been able to push the GOJ of Jamaica via a series of very specific “test” let’s call these Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) which are being measured over a very specific period of time and very specific results are expected, which will then be used to  determine ” pass” or “failure”.

What is most important sign to me is the government of Jamaica is very “committed” to achieving those objectives, as these will determine how the rest of the funds “committed ” to us will be disbursed of the next 4 yrs.

This my fellow bloggers is precisely what I have continuously been driving at on this blog ie the need to have Minister of Government during the start of the budget year, give the public very specific and measurable targets along with timelines and then have the PIOJ/ STATIN etc monitor and report on these on a quarterly basis.

Instead as country we have chosen to ignore what to me make perfect sense and takes comfort in listening to minister after minister give us 2 hrs each of  bullshit to massage our inflated egos.

IMF will have none of that crap and has instead moved to do what we Jamaicans have collectively failed to do over the last 51 yrs.

We owe a DEBT (PUN INTENDED) to the IMF.

Let’s us going forward using the IMF template to hold this and any other government accountable to the people of Jamaica.

Bless

 

Is the Prime Minister back from Africa ?

It hard to say if she is back , as it appears to make no difference whether she is here or not, because we seem to hear nothing from her.

I guess I will have to wait for a ribbon cutting ceremony to find out if she is back in the country.

Can we hear from someone, anyone, what did we achieve after that $8.9m expenditure ?

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