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Last updated: 27 February, 2006 - Published 16:18 GMT
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Portia Simpson: Profile
Jamaica's prime minister-elect Portia Simpson-Miller
Portia simpson salutes supporters
In a few weeks, Portia Simpson Miller will create history by joining the likes of Margaret Thatcher, Dame Eugenia Charles, and Janet Jagan by representing their country at the highest level of leadership in their country.

Portia Simpson Miller has been described as one of Jamaica's most popular politician having served in the Peoples National Party for thirty four years.

"Road Warrior"

In the 1970's Portia Simpson developed a reputation as road warrior and a tough comrade. In 1970 she was appointed parliamentary secretary in the Ministry of Local Government and in the office of the Prime Minister.

In 1989 when the PNP returned to power, Portia Simpson was appointed Minister of Labour Welfare and Sport by her mentor Prime Minister Michael Manley.

 She will surround herself with very bright people as she contemplates the way forward
Valdo Palmer, Simpson-Miller's communications advisor

In 1992 when Michael Manley announced his retirement from politics she fought a hard battle challenging current Prime Minister PJ Patterson for the post.

Undaunted by defeat Portia Simpson has served in Mr. Patterson's cabinet since then.

She is currently Minister for Local Government, Community Development and Sport.

Since then she has remained actively engaged in politics as a member of Parliament, member of the cabinet and to date the Minister of labour and welfare.


Detractors of Mrs. Simpson Miller have suggested that she lacks the intellectual capacity to lead the Jamaican nation and represent the country in a global capacity.

However, Vando Palmer communications advisor to Portia Simpson's campaign says those criticisms are unfair to her because "Portia Simpson Miller does not pretend to be the repository of all knowledge... And she will surround herself with very bright people as she contemplates the way forward."

Dr Glenda Simms, gender development consultant and former Executive Director of the Bureau of Women's Affairs in Jamaica says that Mrs. Simpson Miller's appointment is "a proud moment for the women of our region and the women of the world."

Dr Simms also said that Mrs. Miller's appointment signifies "the beginning of a transformation in Jamaican society, and I am convinced that this augers well for all peoples of the world, especially the third world."

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