By TIFFANY TAYLOR – STAR Writer
One of the first announced plans of the Jamaica Progressive Party (JPP) was to a ban on go-go clubs, abolishing strip clubs, nude hotels and casinos.
Port Henderson Road, more popularly known as ‘Back Road’, is known for prostitution but may not be affected by the party’s plans.
The party’s candidate for South East St Catherine, Alrick Davis, in which Port Henderson falls, says he has no immediate plans for the business district where ‘ladies of the night’ ply their trade. “Should it be that we win this constituency by God’s grace, there is no immediate focus on Back Road. Our focus is mainly and chiefly on the electorate and there is no electorate on Back Road,” he said. “We are focusing on our electorate in St Catherine South Eastern and we want to to bring them leadership, servant leadership,” he said. “Should it (victory of the seat) come to pass, the strip clubs, which are used as a decoy to hackling and trafficking, there will be certain laws that would be put in place to safeguard our young women.”
Davis, an elder at the Braeton Seventh-day Adventist Church, said that his campaigning has not taken him to Back Road as there are no houses in the area.
The church man is contesting a battleground seat now held by the People’s National Party (PNP) Collin Fagan. Robert Miller is the Jamaica Labour Party’s candidate.
“Even though I joined the JPP late, I am very happy to be a part of it, based on the proposed plans of the party leader Mr Gilbert Edwards. I have started garnering votes through social media and WhatsApp, letting the people in those areas know my intentions of representing them. I am going to use the town crier because it is impossible to meet everyone in the five divisions and I will also be using flyers. Victory can be won without the fancy and political gimmicks we see every year,” he said.
Some 37,654 persons are registered to vote in the constituency which Fagan won by 528 votes in 2016.
He polled 7,553 votes in an election in which 14,830 persons voted. Davis feels that he can get in excess of 15,000 persons to vote for him.
Robert Rainford, the JPP’s general secretary, said he believes the candidate is suitable for the constituency.
“He is a man of God, firstly, and he is familiar with the constituency, and has a passion to serve the people,” said Rainford.
The party recently shared manifesto points which include paying Jamaica’s debt of $2 trillion in 90 days, increasing the minimum wage to $65,000 and free education.
The promises have garnered varied responses from the public, according to the party’s secretary.
“The responses have been mixed. Most persons are saying that the plans are not achievable but there are those that are embracing the change and want to support the JPP and to see that we form the next government. We have good support,” said the pastor.