(Jamaica Observer) In his sermon 30-minute sermon centered on the story of Cain and Able, Reverend Dayne Grant called for justice for slain People’s National Party (PNP) Member of Parliament Dr Lynvale Bloomfield, who was yesterday laid to rest in Port Antonio, Portland.
Hundreds of supporters and mourners filled the walls of the Open Bible Church, spilling onto the church grounds where a tent was erected to house people from all walks of life who came out to bid farewell to the two-term MP described as mild-mannered and a doctor for the poor.
“If we want to honour the life of Dr Bloomfield, dedicated, humble, a servant of the community, then we have to make justice swift because justice that is delayed feels like justice is denied. Honour his life by making justice swift. To honour his life, allow justice to be complete… This is what will raise our consciousness and allow us to be better versions of ourselves. Honour the life of Dr Bloomfield by making justice swift. Honour the life of every Jamaican whose blood is crying by making justice swift,” Grant said.
Bloomfield’s body was found in his Passley Gardens home on February 2 with more than 20 stab wounds. A suspect was held by the police in connection with the killing but was subsequently released after questioning. The police have given no further updates.
Many heaped praises on the man described as “mild-mannered” as tributes poured in from family, friends, colleagues and constituents.
PNP President Dr Peter Phillips told the congregation that Bloomfield dedicated his life to the people of Portland Eastern, gave exemplary service to the Opposition party and tremendous contribution to the country.
“He became the doctor of the poor, someone who everyone knew they could go to even if they didn’t have the doctor’s fee. He was the doctor who dispensed medicine from his dispensary even if you never had any cash to pay. As a representative of the people in parliament, he devoted his unlimited energies to helping and uplifting the poor,” said Phillips.
“Representation for him was part of the effort to ensure that poverty did not deny people opportunity in life. He was determined that he would expand opportunities for health care not just in his dispensary, but right across this constituency and indeed right across the country,” Phillips added.
Justice Minister Delroy Chuck, who spoke on behalf of Prime Minister Andrew Holness, noted that yesterday’s “massive” turnout served as a testimony of Bloomfield’s reach throughout the parish.
“On the parliamentary side, Dr Bloomfield may best be remembered for his calm, unassuming, non-confrontational demeanour… This mild-mannered nature, however, did not prevent Dr Bloomfield from providing yeoman service to several parliamentary committee on which he sat,” the justice minister said.
He added that Bloomfield’s contributions to the House were “extremely meaningful and his work ethic more than remarkable”.
That aside, Holness and Phillips will be looking to roll out the blueprint they believe is best to secure or retain the Portland Eastern seat, now that the MP has been buried.
Political activities were suspended in observance of his death, but the election machinery of both the Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) and the PNP are expected to heat up in the coming weeks.