PM Andrew Holness and Mark Golding Intensify their Campaigns Against Each Other on Social Media – See Posts

With Jamaica’s General Election soon, Prime Minister Andrew Holness and opposition leader Mark Golding have intensified their campaign against each other online.

The country’s Local Government Elections unfolded on February 26, the result was a point of contention for several days. Several political commentators suggested that the campaigns run by the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and the People’s National Party (PNP) were more focused on the upcoming General Election instead of the matter at hand.

Following last month’s elections, neither of the political parties has seized campaigning and, on the heels of the 2024/25 budget debate, has further intensified their efforts. The recent speeches made by the Minister of Finance, Dr Nigel Clarke, and Golding remain a topic of discussion, with each political party attempting to poke holes in the arguments made by the other.

During Golding’s contribution to the budget debate, he challenged statements made by Clark that there had been no new taxes. Utilising a chart that showed an increase in tax revenue, Golding said that the taxes being collected from the Jamaican people have risen dramatically under the current government.

However, Golding did not mention the years the tax revenue fell amid the coronavirus pandemic. Nor did he note that there would be a natural increase in tax revenue due to a rise in economic activity and employment, thus more individuals would be able to pay tax.

Following Golding’s speech, Holness has labelled the PNP leader a liar, sharing multiple posts to his Twitter/X page accusing him of gaslighting and attempting to manipulate the Jamaican public.

“Jamaicans are being fed a steady diet of false and misleading information. This includes using incomplete data to support false statements about our economy and our very lives,” Holness wrote in a post on Thursday.

In other posts, the prime minister further condemned the methods used by Golding during the debate and criticised the member of parliament for ‘flip flopping’ on issues to suit his agenda. Holness specifically highlighted the controversial pay hike for government officials.

“Minister Clarke met with them prior to the proposal for the salary increase for Parliamentarians, and later in Parliament, their Spokesperson on Finance, Julian Robinson, said he took no issue with the proposal. Without their agreement, the government would not have moved ahead,” Holness stated.

Reacting to Clark issuing him a symbolic red card for his budget debate speech, Golding expressed that the Holness-led government had received a bad card during the Local Government Elections.

“Nigel is a player, not a referee, yet he pretends to issue red cards. Well, the people of Jamaica showed clearly on the 26th February that him and the Andrew Holness administration draw bad card,” Golding wrote.

Golding has also reiterated the statements he made during the budget debate, highlighting the need for the Speaker of the House, Juliet Holness, to be impartial. Golding has specifically taken issue with the tabling of two Auditor General’s reports.

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