JAMAICA | PNP Minority Caucus Resigns from KSAMC Building and Planning Committee

JAMAICA | PNP Minority Caucus Resigns from KSAMC Building and Planning Committee

Kingston, Jamaica, January 11, 2022: Today, Members of the Minority Caucus of Kingston and St. Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC), have resigned from the Building and Planning Committee due to what they say is the lack of integrity, transparency and efficacy with which the current administration is operating.

In a letter to His Worship the Mayor, Delroy Williams, this morning,  the Minority Caucus of the KSAMC outlined the reasons for their resignation from the Building and Planning  Committee. The members of the Minority Caucus expressed their dissatisfaction with the lack of consideration by the Mayor with regards to recommendations made by the Opposition.

The letter noted that:

" In light of the most recent court rulings which have questioned the soundness of the
decisions made by the Building and Planning Department and the Building and Planning
Committee in granting building approvals, the Minority Caucus offered what we believed to
be possible solutions to mitigate and prevent some of the failures in the current system.
This was in the form of a resolution submitted to the CEO on Tuesday January 4, 2022 to be
placed on the Order Paper for Council Meeting to be held on Tuesday 11th January 2022.
This resolution addresses breaches which have resulted from failures and deficiencies which
are now affecting the Municipal Corporation.

Much to our surprise, we were informed that the resolution would not be taken and was
therefore not placed on the Order Paper. This was alarming, as we believe that our
proposals would have greatly assisted in preventing the recurrence of some of these serious
issues.

Also, there was no valid reason given as to why the resolution was rejected. This was
apparently done, without due consideration, and therefore gives the impression that the
administration is not taking these court rulings, and allegations of corruption seriously.

The frequent allegations of corruption and the failure of the systems to address breaches
when brought to the attention of the KSAMC, is an indication that we cannot continue to
operate in the same manner. Change is inevitable, and time is of the essence.

We need to create a system of efficiency and transparency that will elicit confidence in the integrity and
competency of the KSAMC to equitably execute its functions in a timely manner."

As a result of the decision not to accept this resolution, the members of the Minority
Caucus, whose names and signatures are listed below, hereby resign from the Building and
Planning Committee, with immediate effect. We would like to make it abundantly clear that
we are unequivocally against the current state of affairs as it relates to the issues affecting
the built environment, and that we demand that the administration take the relevant
actions to prevent further decline and renew the confidence in this most vital sector within
our economy.

A statement from the PNP Minority Caucus said "on Tuesday January 4, 2022, Chairman of the Minority Caucus of KSAMC, Councillor Andrew Swaby, submitted a resolution to be placed on the Order Paper for the Council Meeting to be held on Tuesday, January 11, 2022.

"The resolution contained  suggestions from the Opposition with possible solutions to mitigate the failures in the current system. (See Resolution attached). Surprisingly, but not uncharacteristically, the resolution was not taken and has not been put on the Order Paper for today’s meeting.

"In light of recent court rulings which have placed the Building and Planning Committee of the KSAMC under a microscope, the Opposition is concerned that the current administration is not taking these rulings and allegations of corruption seriously. The refusal by the Mayor to take the resolution is indicative of this administration’s lack of regard for due process and for the citizens of Jamaica.

"Several recommendations have been made by the Opposition to put these issues to rest. “We believe that our proposals would have greatly assisted in preventing the recurrence of some of these serious issues” said Councillor Swaby. The Minority Caucus is once again appealing to the leadership of the KSAMC to take steps to prevent a further decline in public confidence in its operations.

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