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Air Jamaica Deal


Permalink 11:13:14 pm, by Melba
Categories: Commentary

Air Jamaica Deal

In 2007 Air Jamaica's London, Heathrow slots were sold to Virgin Atlantic airlines for £5.1million (US$10.2 million). Jamaican’s former Finance Minister, Dr Omar Davies was the person with overall responsible for negotiating the deal. Today, 2010, Dr. Davis is being accused of unlawfully and improperly intervening in the sale of the London Heathrow slots. Reports are that Dr. Davis made false statement to mislead, or attempted to mislead, a contractor general, contrary to Section 29(a) of the Contractor General Act". The Jamaica Constabulary Force has asked the Greg Christie-led Office of the Contractor General (OCG) to carefully craft a formal complaint against Dr. Davies.

Today, Air Jamaica is being given away. Not sold, but being given away. Not given away with its debt, but being given away free of debt. Who will pay the heavy debts which Air Jamaica now owes? Believe it or not, the Jamaican Government. Sorry that is the Jamaican tax payers, you and I. What about the present routes that Air Jamaica now has, how much is the present Finance Minister, Audley Shaw getting for them? Not to mention the level of secrecy (deception) surrounding the divestment of Air Jamaica from day one.

Now, I think the arguments re the divestment of Air Jamaica has been exhausted. The company continues to make a lost and must be removed from the government’s budget. The present CEO, Mr. Bruce Nobles is reported to have had a great business plan which is supposed to be improving the company’s position. Apparently, too little, too late. What about the Air Jamaica’s pilot and employee’s bid for the company? Not sure why that option was treated with such contempt by the government, but it never seemed to have been a consideration. The Minister of Tourism, Mr. Edmond Bartlet appears very happy to pay any other airline but his national carrier to ensure that tourist have a means of getting to Jamaica. Not sure who his advisors are or why Mr. Christie is not investigating his statements, however the country continues to suffer because of Mr. Bartlet’s follies. I hope when the other airlines just up and leave Jamaica, Mr. Bartlet has a plan. And it puzzles me greatly how so many other carriers are willing to snatch up the unprofitable routes that Air Jamaica has discarded.   

Three years ago one minister sold a piece of our National carrier. Many Jamaicans disagreed with the move at the time however it was done and we all accepted it. Today that minister is being questioned about it. Today the rest of Air Jamaica is being given away and again we are all standing by and allowing it to happen. It is time for us Jamaicans to be proactive instead of reactive. I think we all agree that something needs to be done about Air Jamaica, but is giving it away free, in the best interest of Jamaicans. Maybe Mr. Greg Christie could use his office to lead a formal investigation on the matter now and not some years in the future.

Nuff Love

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Bruk Pocket Jamaican

"Recently, this Jamaican won the 10 million special lottery for a dollar. As soon as the office of the Lottery Corporation was open on the following day, he was there to collect his winnings.

Graciously, he presented his winning ticket to the clerk and in his best English uttered his request "Me cum fi collect the 10 millian dallars, si me ticket ya".

After reviewing and checking the ticket with his manager, the clerk returned and requested on how he would like his payments. The Jamaican replied "Mi wan all a de moni now". "Unfortunately, Sir" the nervous clerk responded, "The procedures are that we can only give you one million now and the balance equally over the next 20 years".

Furious and agitated, the Jamaican asked for the manager, who re-iterated "Sir, my assistant is correct, it is the regulation of the corporation that we initially pay you one million dollars now with the balance paid to you equally over the next 20 years".

Outraged, the Jamaican slammed his hand on the desk and shouted in anger, "Oonu tek me fi idiat, me wan all a de moni now or oonu gi me bak me rass dallar!!"


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