Election 2002 Home » News
Cabinet choices - hard task for new PM
Virtue, Staff Reporter
next Prime Minister will face a mammoth task of naming a new
Cabinet and evidence of national consensus will be critical,
political analysts and commentators say.
Senate will see some widening to include more civilians, especially
from the monied sector.
(parties) will add private sector people - both are committed
to broadening the Senate to include members of civil society.
Big capital must be represented in the Senate. I can see them
being offered things like independent Senatorship, but the
question is will they accept?" political analyst Dr.
D. K. Duncan said.
generally agreeing with Dr. Duncan, commentator and attorney,
Dr. Paul Ashley, feels that some 'newly-appointed independent
senators' could end up with ministerial responsibilities.
are many persons (candidates) walking around with minister-to-be
on their chest, but we will see what we shall see. I believe
that should the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) win, Mr. Seaga
will be relying heavily on the Senate from which to choose
ministers, although some of the faithful will have to be rewarded."
Ashley believes that People's National Party (PNP) leader,
P. J. Patterson "will not shock anybody in his new Cabinet."
will be changes, but, it will not be earth-shattering. Mr.
Patterson is very conservative and will not do anything 'un-Patterson
like'. But, it will be interesting to see the part that will
be played by the resignees and returnees," he said.
Members of Parliament (MP), Errol Ennis, Karl Blythe and Ronald
Thwaites, were forced to resign after they became embroiled
in controversies last year.
Ashley believes that Maxine Henry-Wilson and Dr. Paul Robertson
will be rewarded for turning the PNP's fortunes around in
the polls. He said they will be returned to the Cabinet.
Henry-Wilson and Dr. Robertson were dispatched on the ground
last year to revive the party's poor showing in the polls,
after its loss in the North East St. Ann by-election.
Mayor of Montego Bay, Shalman Scott, agreed that Mrs. Henry-Wilson
and Dr. Robertson will be rewarded handsomely.
is no doubt that they will be rewarded. What they have done
is nothing short of a miracle, pulling the PNP back from disaster
to being ahead in the polls and perhaps well on to winning
the election," he said last week.
according to Dr. Duncan, Mrs. Henry-Wilson will not be the
only woman who could possibly be asked to head a ministry.
the 19 women who are running for Parliament in the two major
parties (13 PNP and 6 JLP), "...most are not seat winners,"
Dr. Duncan said.
ones who will win are Portia Simpson Miller, Sharon Hay-Webster,
Aloun Assamba, Maxine Henry-Wilson, Babsy Grange and Shahine
Robinson," he said.
who could be appointed a ministry portfolio (under the respective
Government) are Portia Simpson Miller, Aloun Assamba, Maxine
Henry-Wilson and Babsy Grange.
Scott said he does not expect any of the "resignees"
to return to the Cabinet and he too expects to see more women
of those expected to bow out of a PNP Cabinet is Education
Minister, Burchell Whiteman, while Arnold Bert-ram is expected
to shed the Youth portfolio of his ministry, Dr. Ashley said.
Minister in the Education Ministry, Fitz Jackson, could be
promoted and National Security Minister, Dr. Peter Phillips,
Ashley added that he would not like to be in the shoes of
JLP spokesman on finance Audley Shaw, "because, if the
JLP wins, Mr. Seaga will be taking that portfolio under his
configuration, Dr. Duncan imagines, is that the portfolio
would be Ministry of Finance and Development and Bruce Golding,
a Senator, would become a full minister and Shaw would be
the point man for investment and job creation.
Charles would be in the Cabinet. The only way he would be
out is if the JLP wins 50 seats. Then there would be no problem
if there is a fallout," Dr. Duncan said.
source from within the JLP told The Sunday Gleaner that, "the
worse part of winning the election will be naming the Cabinet.
I swear to God the party will mash up."
was willing to bet $1 million that there will be no Cabinet
positions for Pearnel Charles, Mike Henry, Karl Samuda and
of them are former gang of five members," the latter
1990, JLP members attempted to unseat Mr. Seaga as leader
of the party. Those come to be known as the Gang of Five were
Karl Samuda, Pearnel Charles, Ed Bartlett, Errol Anderson
and Douglas Vaz.
an unsuccessful attempt, and a bitter political fight, including
a court battle, they were invited to "light a candle,
sing a sankey and find your way back home."
Charles, Bartlett and Samuda returned to the party, while
Douglas Vaz went to the National Democratic Movement (NDM).
Errol Anderson has since died.
Scott feels that should the JLP form the next Government,
many of the current 'split ministries' will be joined, and
some super ministries created.
expressed the view that Mr. Seaga will keep the finance portfolio,
leaving Audley Shaw "somewhere."
also said, "Bruce Golding will have the most to lose
if the JLP loses again and even if it wins, he will be between
a rock and a hard place.
way you look at it, Bruce will not have much to gain from
a win and worse if the party loses. If it wins the loyalists
will say the party was going to win the election anyway. If
it loses, he will get the greatest blame," he said.
addition, if the party loses, "the campaign will start
immediately to flush Golding from making any challenges to
the leadership," he said.