Jamaica’s Government Elects First Blind Senate President

By: Caribbean Journal Staff - May 18, 2013

Above: Parliament in Jamaica

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Jamaica has named Floyd Morris as its new president of the Senate, making him the first blind president of the chamber.

Morris succeeds former Senate President Rev. Stanley Redwood, who resigned last week.

In accepting the post, Morris pointed to a number of prominent issues in the country, including fostering growth, developing the education system and raising the academic achievement of Jamaica’s boys.

“When I go to the different universities, they are being dominated by our females and I say to myself, ‘where will the husbands for these females come from?’” he said. “I really want to join the efforts of the Prime Minister and the Governor-General to make sure that we restore a level of decency among our males and to ensure that our young boys take education seriously.”

He also urged the Senate to “make a tremendous effort” to advance the process for the Caribbean Court of Justice to become the country’s final court of appeal, replacing the Privy Council.

That was an early pledge of Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller, although the country has done little to move forward on that front.

“I look forward to having discussions with members on both sides of the aisle to ensure that this takes place because justice is tied closely to economic growth and development,” Morris said.

Morris was the first visually impaired person to be appointed to the Upper House in 1998.

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