KINGSTON, Jamaica— The Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and People’s National Party (PNP) are battling over the purchase of two website domain names ahead of Jamaica’s general elections later this year.
The parties have traded blows, with the ruling PNP claiming an online presence with “FromPovertyToProsperity.com”, and an apparent JLP supporter claiming the name “PortiaSimpsonMiller.com”.
For several months, the PNP’s Dr. Dayton Campbell has been accusing the JLP of stealing his campaign slogan, “From Poverty to Prosperity”.
The slogan is the theme of the ‘Prosperity Live’ series being fronted by JLP leader Andrew Holness at various venues locally and abroad.
The JLP claims they first started using the slogan from as far back as 2011, under Prime Minister Bruce Golding.
But the PNP took the row to the Internet when it purchased the domain name FromPovertyToProsperity.com a month ago.
The website is headed by a large photo of Finance Minister, Dr. Peter Phillips and Youth Minister, Lisa Hanna.
Beneath that, there’s an orange and white banner that reads, “From Poverty to Prosperity. The Economic Reform Programme is on Track.”
Another orange and white banner reads, “Petrocaribe debt buyback a positive for Jamaica.”
The site also features several video links to interviews and presentations by Ministers Phillips and Hanna.
The JLP issued a statement this morning calling the PNP’s move a petty act of desperation. They also say it’s immoral and unethical.
And now someone, apparently from within the JLP, has now hit back with a web purchase of their own, registering the name of the PNP leader and the incumbent Prime Minister at PortiaSimpsonMiller.com. The web address redirects to the JLP’s website, JamaicaLabourParty.com, with a banner page featuring a photo of a smiling Andrew Holness, Jamaica’s Leader of the Opposition.
As the PNP continues to refine its campaign message, phrases like “Step Up The Progress” and “Step Up To Progress” have been used by party supporters on social media. However, checks by our news center today reveal that both stepuptheprogress.com and stepuptoprogress.com have been acquired by the JLP and redirect persons back to the JLP website.
Speaking with Nationwide News today, the JLP’s media liaison, Robert Morgan, did not deny that someone from within the party made the purchase.
Up to news time, we were unable to reach a representative of the PNP for comment.
Reporting by Kalilah Enriquez