The Patriots

The Patriots




Controversy over budget debate continues:-

Opposition Spokesman on Finance Audley Shaw's comments during his recent contribution to the 2001/2002 Budget Debate have been condemned by the Patriots, the young professional arm of the ruling People's National Party (PNP).

The Patriots argued strongly against Mr. Shaw's statements, in light of the improved assessment of the Jamaican economy by the international rating agency Standard and Poor.

The country's rating was moved from B to B+.

In a strongly-worded statement today, The Patriots called on Mr. Shaw to retract what they called his "unsubstantiated and mischievous comment" that the Government has presented a "Three Card Budget". The professional body stated that such remarks only serve to undermine national confidence at a time when the economy is showing extremely positive signs of economic buoyancy with a stable exchange rate, low inflation, and unprecedented highs in the Net International Reserves (NIR).

The Patriots also demanded that in light of Mr. Shaw's allegation of trickery on the part of the government, he should exercise every opportunity to demonstrate political cleanliness on his own part.

Noting that the JLP Deputy Leader is also Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament (PAC), and also that there is a yet unanswered question about the stewardship of the Social and Economic Support Programme (SESP) in his North East Manchester constituency, the Patriots declared that Mr. Shaw must follow through on his public promise to invite the Auditor-General to investigate the use of the SESP in that constituency.

The Patriots have also announced their intention to keep this issue in the public domain, until it is resolved.

Contact:  Donovan Nelson     818-1112
                  Christopher Brown  777-7126

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