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‘It won’t be long!’ - Golding tells Labourites to get ready for election

Published:Tuesday | November 26, 2019 | 12:13 AMRomario Scott/Gleaner Writer
Former Prime Minister Bruce Golding addresses Jamaica Labour Party supporters during the party’s annual conference, held at the National Arena on Sunday.
Former Prime Minister Bruce Golding addresses Jamaica Labour Party supporters during the party’s annual conference, held at the National Arena on Sunday.

Former Prime Minister Bruce Golding has warned current Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Leader Andrew Holness that he cannot wait too long to call a general election.

Golding, who back in 2011 endorsed Holness, then leader of Government business in the House of Representatives, to become prime minister, said that the current JLP leader has matured and represented the hope of young people in the country.

“Under your leadership, this Government has done well, you have demonstrated that the country is in safe and capable hands. You have continued and consolidated the stabilisation of the economy. You have achieved record-low inflation. Last year, inflation was 2.4 per cent. Not so long ago, we would have endured 2.4 per cent in one month alone,” Golding said as he touted the administration’s success.

He was speaking at the party’s 76th annual conference, held at the National Arena in St Andrew on Sunday.

It was under Golding’s leadership that the JLP finally returned to power in 2007, after spending over 18 years in the political wilderness.

Golding noted that when he drove into some deep rural sections of the country, roads which have been neglected for decades had been asphalted.

‘don’t stop the progress’

“Some people used to say, ‘Don’t stop the progress’, well, this is the kind a progress we cannot afford to stop,” Golding said to loud cheers from JLP supporters in the arena.

He said that he was confident that Holness would lead the JLP into victory over the People’s National Party when the next general election is called.

“Now, I don’t know what is in Andrew’s mind. Only he – I don’t even think Juliet knows – knows when he is going to ring the bell and fly the gate. But as we approach the final year of this first term, let us realise it can’t be too long.

“If it is not soon, soon it won’t be long, long,” Holness quipped.

But despite telling the conference that he had no knowledge surrounding the possible calling of an election, he had word for those in attendance.

“Get ready! Make sure you have oil in your lamp and make sure your wicks are well trimmed,” the former JLP leader urged.

He told the party workers to leave the conference with the mission of mobilising people to secure a second term for the JLP.

Elections are constitutionally due by 2021.