Jamaican News

New poll suggests most Jamaicans believe island is headed in wrong direction under PM

Andrew Holness

KINGSTON, Jamaica _ A new poll suggested Sunday that 73 per cent of Jamaicans believe the country is headed in the wrong direction under Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller.

The survey of 1,208 residents over two days last month was commissioned by the Jamaica Gleaner newspaper, which published partial results Sunday. It was conducted by pollster Bill Johnson and has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

Johnson’s poll for the newspaper also suggests that most Jamaicans believe opposition leader Andrew Holness would do a better job as leader.

The survey comes in the middle of Simpson Miller’s term since leading her party to a landslide victory in 2011 elections over Holness’ incumbent Jamaica Labor Party.

In a Sunday statement, Simpson Miller’s party said economic indicators are improving and it is optimistic more Jamaicans will soon register “a more positive outlook on the future.”

Jamaica is in the midst of a four-year loan package with the International Monetary Fund, which began amid grim economic forecasts for the heavily indebted island. Many people have seen their wages frozen as the cost of food and other essentials has increased and the local currency has been steadily devaluing.

In June, IMF managing director Christine Lagarde praised Jamaica’s political leadership for making key economic reforms during the first year of the extended fund facility.

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