On Tuesday July 12, 2022, Mr. Horace Levy renowned Social Advocate and Author visited the Jamaica Stock Exchange to ring the bell for his book titled ‘Jamaica Fractured Nation Vibrant People’. This thought-provoking book consists of 142 pages which seeks to answer the question – ‘where is Jamaica headed?’ by telling the story of the first 101 years of Jamaica’s modern history and making recommendations to bridge the divisions we now have, to create a more civil society.
Dr. Marlene Street Forrest, Managing Director of the JSE in her welcome to the specially invited guests stated that, “It is usual that we have a ceremony to ring the bell and open the market only on particularly important occasion of significance to the Exchange, the market, or the economy at large. This morning I am sure you will agree that an account of Jamaica taking us from 1920 to 2022, provides a perspective that will help us to shape the economy moving forward and this should be considered significant”. She continued by stating that, “As a stock exchange, we understand that social and governance issues are key elements to the development and growth of the economy. The aspects of sustainability and the results that have affected our prospects positively or negatively in our attempt towards true financial independence”. In closing Dr. Street Forrest offered heartiest congratulations to Mr. Levy on this interesting publication and for the opportunity of sharing in his success.
Mr. Howard Mitchell, Attorney at law and Businessman said it was a great privilege for him to be present at the ceremony which he considers a significant moment for Jamaica, He said it was significant because a functional society requires collaboration on an equal basis between the market, civil society, and the state. He emphasized that the market was as much a contributor to social cohesion as much as a beneficiary of it, so the ringing of the bell for this book was well timed and placed considering the issues with which we now grapple. He further said that Horace Levy’s Book represents an opportunity to drive home that we are all in this together. He congratulated Mr. Levy on a well written publication.
Mr. Robert Stevens, a Business Entrepreneur said Horace Levy is a Jamaican who loved grassroots people and is an advocate for the underprivileged. He also stated that it is Mr. Levy’s desire for every Jamaican to realize their potential and benefit from the resources of the country.
In his reply, Mr. Levy told the audience that in essence, the book is about Jamaica as a nation and how politics have divided the country. He remarked that Jamaicans are very proud people and if there can be unity among all groups, civil society, politicians, and advocate groups there can be unity of purpose and Jamaica will be a great nation.
The keynote speaker Professor Rosalee Hamilton described Mr. Levy as one of Jamaica’s real National Treasures and one of our many torchbearers who have provided a shining light for others on that long path to freedom. She closed by saying Jamaica: Fractured Nation, Vibrant People provides important insights to guide our action in creating a better future as we move towards a Republic.