By Jamaica Observer
Member of Parliament for St Ann South Eastern and People’s National Party (PNP) spokesperson on foreign affairs and foreign trade, Lisa Hanna has announced her intention to leave representational politics.
Hanna announced her intention in a letter to Opposition Leader and PNP President Mark Golding, notifying him that she will not be offering herself as a candidate for the PNP when the next General Election is called.
“I have always been a champion of change and having the courage to do what’s right even when it’s not expedient or self-serving, as I believe courage has an obligation to pave new roads for the generation coming behind us. As such, I have recently decided to conclude my current journey in representational politics at the end of this term,” Hanna said.
“Therefore, I will not be offering myself as the Party’s candidate in the next general election when it is called, a decision I have communicated to my constituency executive,” she added.
Hanna, whose constituency has been dogged by internal conflict for years, said she trusts that the “early notice” of her departure “will give constituency delegates adequate time to go through a selection process to select a candidate of their choice, which is their constitutional right.
“I remain available to serve at your consideration in the Shadow Cabinet as Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade,” she added.
Hanna first became a parliamentary representative in 2007, after being invited by former PNP President Portia Simpson Miller to join the party and be the standard bearer for St Ann South East in the general elections that year, a move she said “changed my life immensely as it allowed me to serve my country in another capacity.”
Hanna continued, “Over the last fifteen years, I have found this experience quite satisfying; it allowed me the privilege to serve as an elected Member of Parliament, Cabinet Minister, on the national scene, and at the Party level as Regional Chairman and Treasurer.
“This opportunity will always be a part of me as it reshaped the foundations of my thinking and will forever guide my perspective,” Hanna said.
Hanna, who lost against Golding in her bid to lead the PNP, said the party must reinforce its core tenets “within the minds and hearts of Jamaicans to inspire their imagination and aspire towards a better future” in order to form the next government.
“The PNP has always believed in equal opportunity for all regardless of station in life. This fundamental philosophy has driven our actions to propel solutions for national prosperity through building the economic base of Jamaica from the bottom up. We have always been the Party with a heart, the people’s Party that is in touch with the grassroots and committed to ensuring no Jamaican is left behind,” Hanna said.
“However, for any organization to survive and be relevant to successive global environments and markets, it must be responsive and change with the times, seeking modern approaches to getting things done. This does not mean changing our core principles, mission, or value proposition but rather, embracing modern communication, applying our principles to 21st-century challenges, empowering the next generation, and, most importantly, attracting and retaining the right talents to get the job done,” she said.