President of the People’s National Party (PNP) and Opposition Leader Portia Simpson Miller is promising to review the country’s buggery law if she is returned as prime minister of Jamaica.
The pronouncement came last night as she faced Prime Minister and leader of the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Andrew Holness in the third and final political debate convened by the Jamaica Debates Commission.It also comes amidst the intensification of discussions on the matter.
“We should have a look at the buggery law,” said Simpson Miller in response to a question on gay rights.
She also challenged a previous pronouncement by former prime minister Bruce Golding who told a BBC TV interviewer some years ago that no gays could serve in his Cabinet.Simpson Miller said she was not in favour of such a position and suggested that persons should be selected for Cabinet duties on the basis of their capacity to deliver.
Responding to the same question, Holness articulated the need for Jamaica to achieve minimum standards governing human rights and suggested that such steps were being taken through measures such as the passage of the Bill of Rights.He added that any change to the existing legislation should be made on the basis of due consideration to the views of the people.
“We are an open society and the issues that are difficult and uncomfortable to discuss, as the society progresses, these issues are being discussed. People are entitled to their opinions but as leader of the country I have to respect everybody’s opinion (and) make sure that the institutions of freedom are well in place so that the debate can continue,” said Holness.
Let us also remember importantly that this is her personal position and not of the rest of the party and it doesn't appear under the justice theme of the PNP's manifesto.
Meanwhile Desmond Mckenzie of the Jamaica Labour Party JLP on the campaign trail said "I think the debate on this is not for now but it is a debate that should go on but there are moral issues here that as a country that has more church per capita than anywhere else in the world that is something that should not escape our minds right now."
The Line in the Sand for the JLP Part 14 ...... but vote ☐ PNP ☐ JLP ☑ Legalize Buggery/Anal Sex in private ........
here is one of the disparaging videos bashing PNP operatives
could this also be a reason for Portia's response??
UPDATE Dec 23, 2011
Vaz Says Constituents Stand Firm Against Homosexuality
Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) candidate for West Portland, Daryl Vaz, on Wednesday night told a party mass rally in St Mary that his constituents have already told him to say no to the repealing of the buggery law.
Addressing thousands of Labourites in the seaside town of Annotto Bay, Vaz poured scorn on comments by People's National Party (PNP) President Portia Simpson Miller during the national leadership debate with JLP Leader Andrew Holness on Tuesday.
Simpson Miller, in her rebuttal to a question of whether homosexuals would be excluded from the Cabinet, said the issue was one of human rights, and her party would not reject anyone based on their sexual orientation. She said should the PNP be returned to power, Parliament would initiate discussion on the buggery law in Jamaica with a conscience vote on whether it should be repealed.
But Vaz claimed the people of his West Portland constituency had already spoken on the matter.
"We don't buy number two inna Cash Pot," said Vaz, in a reference to thepopular game of chance in which the number two is used by some persons to refer to homosexuals.
According to Vaz, while he was willing to participate in any debate on gay rights, his response is a foregone conclusion.
"God made Adam and Eve and not Adam and Steve," Vaz said as Labourites cheered and shouted anti-gay slurs.
The issue of homosexuality has been on the JLP election platform even before it was raised as a question in the debate Tuesday night.
In Gordon Town, St Andrew, last Sunday, JLP deputy leader and the party's candidate for Western Kingston, Desmond McKenzie, declared "fire bun", following strains from the popular dancehall song which has a line "dem a par inna chi chi man car".
Also, at a recent meeting in St Elizabeth, persons on the JLP platform made reference to their love for "boonoonoonus" women, a claim that sparked a backlash from women's groups.
Former JLP leader and then Prime Minister Bruce Golding had declared an in interview on the BBC that no gay men would be allowed to serve in his Cabinet.
On Tuesday, Holness, did not articulate a clear position when questioned on the issue but implied that he would not fly in the face of popular opinion opposed to gay rights.
In recent months, several countries, which are aid donors to Jamaica, have suggested that they might change their position if more was not done to protect the rights of homosexuals.
also see the GLEANER EDITORIAL - Courageous Stance Worthy Of Replication and ‘Idiot plan that!’ - Many Jamaicans against Buggery Law review
She said on October 20th 2009 - "Mr Speaker when we accepted the final report from the joint select committee that were looking at the bill we were completely satisfied with their recommendation of a provision to restrict marriage and like relationships to one man and one woman within Jamaica and that the provision should be specifically spelt out so that there could be no ambiguity .......... yes one man one woman (laughter in the house) and if you are Jamaican and go overseas the same applies ..........."