Prime Minister Andrew Holness is expected to call the general election for the week before the new academic year starts on September 7. Party insiders say the likeliest dates are September 2 or 3 in the narrow window to avoid interrupting the return of students.
That equation takes into consideration the minimum periods before and after nomination day and the tradition to not stage elections on a weekend.
Some highly placed party insiders, however, put September 10 as the outer band for D-Day.
Holness, leader of the ruling Jamaica Labour Party (JLP), will be casting a worrying eye on the surge of coronavirus cases locally that shot past the 1,000 mark, as well as the danger of hurricane winds blowing off course his electoral advantage as cited in multiple opinion polls.
Under its official slogan, ‘Recovering Stronger’, the JLP is now in full campaign mode, though with a more sobering message of rebuilding amid the COVID-19 pandemic compared to the triumphalist rhetoric of ‘Prosperity’ in 2016.