Our news center looks back at Lisa Hanna’s entry into the political arena to her bombshell announcement signalling her intention to walk away at the end of the current parliamentary term.
Here’s Wayne Walker with that report.
Lisa Hanna, mother, former beauty queen, model, actress, and soon to be former politician.
After 15 years of representing South East St Ann, SESA, as Member of Parliament, Lisa Hanna has announced that at the end of this parliamentary term she will not be seeking re-election.
This brings to a close a political life that at one point had so much promise but in the end seemingly crashed upon the rocks of disappointment.
Hanna’s first major foray into politics, came during the 1997 election, when, along with then husband and David Panton – she campaigned heavily for the then opposition JLP.
In 2006, Prime Minister Portia Simpson-Miller convinced her to join the PNP and bid for the safe seat in South East St. Ann in the 2007 general elections.
Members of the constituency openly railed against her being parachuted into the PNP rural stronghold. They were only assuaged following the intervention of the former MP Seymour Mullings who vouched for her.
This would be a running theme for the former beauty queen , who though popular with the national public, had a difficult time mustering support among the PNP faithful.
Hanna retained the seat at the 2011 election, and was later appointed minister for culture and youth.
The PNP lost the 2016 election, but Hanna again retained her seat.
The 2020 election along with its aftermath however seems to be where everything fell apart for Ms Hanna.
With the PNP being almost wiped out around the country, she barely managed to hold on to her seat by only 31 votes following a recount.
With the resignation of Peter Phillips as party leader, Hanna seized the opportunity to run for the leadership of the now 84-year-old party.
Her entry into the race was viewed by some as a proxy battle between Peter Bunting and Peter Phillips represented by Mark Golding and Lisa Hanna respectively.
On November 7, 2020, Hanna lost her leadership battle to Golding in a campaign that opened up wounds which are still not fully healed, previously she had lost her attempt to become a vice-president of the party.
As this happened, divisions between herself and her councillors deepened along with the open animosity between the Golding and Hanna factions of the PNP.
Her announcement has taken many by surprise but one that has seemingly brought to an end a career which started out with much promise. It’s now ending in a whimper.