News Years Messages from Jamaica’s Leaders

As is customary at the start of each new year the Leader of the Opposition Portia Simpson-Miller, the Prime Minister Bruce Golding and the Governor General His Excellency the Most Hon. Professor Sir Kenneth Hall made televised addresses to the nation. The addresses provide Jamaican the opportunity to reminisce of the happenings of the previous year while looking positively into the future to take on new challenges and uplift Jamaica.

jamaica team beijing olympics opening ceremony
Jamaica’s Beijing Olympics performance was the highlight of the year for many

Governer General’s New Years Message 2009 Excerpts

In order for our people to fulfill their expectations, we should examine the factors both internal and external to Jamaica, which are responsible for the many issues which the country is now facing. Whatever the prescriptive measures that will be applied, we must resolve to emerge from the existing crises as a stronger nation.

If that goal is to be realized it must have its foundation in our support for national and indigenous institutions, buttressed by the values of kindness and cooperation that have served Jamaica well. In 2009 therefore, let us see how best we can strengthen our local institutions to withstand the adverse effects of globalization.

This approach requires a form of social transformation, if we are to promote a change in the attitudes of our people from a culture of giving prominence to external influences, to the realization that our indigenous resources and institutions should be preserved for the benefit of our Jamaican people…read full address

Prime Minister’s New Years Message 2009 Excerpts

We have said goodbye to 2008 with mixed feelings. I say “mixed feelings” because in spite of the difficulties we experienced, there were some great moments.

The outstanding performance of our athletes at the Beijing Olympics filled us with pride and served as a reminder that we have it in us to accomplish great things. They are undoubtedly our heroes of 2008.

Crime was a major concern in 2008 as it has been for as long as we can remember. The brutality of murders committed especially among women and children caused great alarm and outrage throughout the country. Up to the end of May, the murder rate was running at 18% higher than last year. The measures which were instituted around the middle of the year have begun to work. There has been a noticeable slowdown in the rate of murders and we ended the year 3% above last year’s figure of 1574 but, thankfully, below the record level of 1674 recorded in 2005…read full address

Oposition Leader’s New Years Message 2009 Excerpts

The world is currently experiencing a global economic crisis. The economies of many countries are already in “recession” and the negative impact that this will have across the world, including Jamaica will be significant.

In Jamaica, we have already begun to feel the impact of the crisis, as a large number of our population, including middle income families, professionals, business persons, and the most vulnerable, are all facing
severe hardships as our economy contracts.

All predictions are that 2009 will be a challenging time for all countries of the world…read full address

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