JAMAICA: Opposition leader to demit office in April
Leader of the main opposition People’s National Party (PNP), Portia Simpson Miller, on Sunday announced that she will step down from the position on April 2.
Simpson Miller, 71, told delegates at a meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC), in the central parish of Manchester, that she will submit her resignation as opposition leader to Governor General Sir Patrick Allen after she makes her contribution to the Budget Debate in Parliament.
Simpson Miller, a former Prime Minister, said while she will resign as opposition leader, she will remain the Member of Parliament for St Andrew South West.
Ahead of demitting office, the party will host a special delegates’ conference on March 26 to choose a new president.
It is expected that Dr Peter Phillips, an economist and former Finance Minister, will be unopposed for the position, but he will need at least 50 percent of delegates to affirm his presidency.
Simpson Miller will be stepping down after serving as PNP president for 11 years and serving twice as Prime Minister.
In the general election last year, she lost to the Jamaica Labour Party’s (JLP) Andrew Holness and this prompted calls for her to give up leadership of the party and to set a timeline to step down. (CMC)