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Senator Moore ‘regrets’ not going for Home Affairs role

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SENATOR Kristina Moore – one of only two States Members with an Islandwide mandate who does not hold a ministerial position – has said she regrets not fighting for the Home Affairs job.

But the politician said she would have been ineffective in the Council of Ministers and was not wanted by Chief Minister John Le Fondré. Senator Moore, who was Home Affairs Minister in the previous Gorst government, said there were up to six candidates, as well as the current Home Affairs Minister Len Norman, who were shortlisted for the role ahead of her in 2018.

Senator Sarah Ferguson and Senator Moore are the only Senators who do not hold ministerial positions – despite the latter finishing second in the Senatorial poll behind Education Minister Tracey Vallois. Senator Moore received 15,292 votes and, with that result, she would have topped the poll in 2014.

The ex-minister, who now chairs the Corporate Services Scrutiny Panel, has also questioned the effectiveness of the current Council of Ministers and said she believes had the previous government carried on, the Island would be in a better position with regards to the new hospital.

She added that she had always been in favour of the People’s Park site as the preferred choice and thought the government should have persevered with the Gloucester Street location as the next best option.

In a poll carried out by Senator Moore, almost 70 per cent of the 672 respondents said the decisions made by the current Council of Ministers were not representative of what they had voted for. She is due to make all of the results public soon.

She said: ‘What I am getting from the poll is that this is not what people voted for. The decisions being made are not what people voted for when they went to the polls. This isn’t the government people voted for.’

On a vote-by-vote basis, 2018’s 21 ministers and assistant ministers received a total of 87,718 votes. Compare that with the 2014 government and the 21 ministers and assistant ministers received 92,112 votes. Currently there are five ministers and assistant ministers who were elected unopposed including three assistant chief ministers. In 2014 there were six ministers or assistant ministers elected unopposed.

Asked if she was in favour of electoral reforms – scrapping the role of Senator, removing Constables from the States and electing Deputies from nine super-constituencies – Senator Moore said she supported some change but felt now was not the right time.

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‘There are bigger issues that people want dealt with. Because of this government’s lack of delivery it’s very hard to then suggest that we need to be looking at ourselves rather than the future economy or the new hospital,’ she said.

Speaking about the Home Affairs job, Senator Moore, who would not be drawn on whether she would consider standing in the next election, said: ‘One year on, and having time to reflect, it was my responsibility to fight for the job and I did not. I feel that I have a great deal of respect for the Home Affairs family and the work they do in maintaining the safety of all Islanders – they are a really important part of keeping Jersey special. I suppose I feel I have let them down and not lived up to what I was campaigning to do.

‘When they put Len [Norman] forward I knew he would approach the role with gusto and would be listened to by the Council of Ministers. I felt that I wouldn’t be.’

Jack Maguire

By Jack Maguire
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