By Crisan Evans
It is not surprising when older folks bash younger persons, saying that they are the reason behind a political party ruining the country because “young people don’t vote”. Cliché mindset. However, how much truth does this accusation hold? From a young person’s perspective, I would say that it holds a small amount of truth. It’s not that we don’t want to vote, it is just that we are yet to see a political party that shares the same vision and values as we hold.
Recently, I was engaged in a conversation with my boss on this subject matter. He was saying that a young person will sometimes choose or show preference towards a political party. However, they always shy away from voting. He went ahead and asked for my opinion on the subject matter of young people not voting. Here is my response: Politics is a cycle of disappointment with no end. No matter who is in power it will be the same thing only in a different fashion.
A few weeks ago, following the announcement of this year’s election I looked around and I saw the same thing I see every time a general election is being prepared for. I see broken promises, conflict amongst neighbours because of opposing beliefs, and debates where questions are ditched and poor people are left confused. The current Prime Minister boasts “a good term” and while it can be agreed that some great policies were put in place, there remains a large sum of people who have been left behind – specifically, young people. These policies did not cater to young people. Fifty percent of university graduates remain unemployed and those who are employed are left to work at BPOs or wherever they can to pay off student loans and provide for their necessities.
Politics in Jamaica is a complete joke. Many of these ministers in parliament have no experience in executing policies on a country level scale. This is because there is no mentorship in any of these parties. Also, the people of Jamaica are oblivious to the procedures and the requirements one should meet to become a member of parliament. The question here, therefore, is: do these people know how to execute the portfolios assigned to them? How does one become a parliamentarian?
It is one thing to make promises and another to execute these promises. Term after term we continue to put these people in power to operate and run our country, and we continue to fail to acknowledge the fact that the country is where it is because the people “we” put in power have no experience or idea as to what they are doing. You cannot give a man, with no experience whatsoever, a hose and say he is a fireman. Why? Because he has no experience of fighting a fire. By doing this you will be jeopardizing the lives of others and that man’s life as well. All I am saying is that whoever is assigning portfolios to these ministers is making way for corruption and fails to serve the Jamaican people.
Again it can be agreed that Andrew Holness had many great policies but many mistakes were made. Last year, Jamaica’s score worsened on the Corruption Perception Scale. The 2019 index revealed a score of 43, a score lower than that of the previous year – 44. This is measured on a scale where 0 represents countries with a high concentration of corruption and 100 represents a low corruption rate. Reasons for this drop include the alleged corruption of former Education Minister, Ruel Reid. A matter that could have been avoided if the right screening was done to weed out corrupt individuals.
Voting for either party would be like joining in on a joke and considering a third party would be a complete waste of time. After 58 years of independence, it is obvious the current government system is not working. It is therefore better to lobby for a better democratic system that will be better able to ensure efficient running of the country no matter the party in power.
Crisan Evans is a content creator and Journalist whose passion lies in unravelling stories, reading, and writing poetry and other creatives. She completed her studies in Journalism at UWI, CARIMAC, and wants to contribute to changes in society through her journalism career.
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