The city of Jackson’s mayor, Chokwe Antar Lumumba, made a big announcement about his future on Monday.
During a news conference, Lumumba said as it currently stands, he plans to seek reelection in 2025. The Democrat was first elected in 2017 and has had a controversial run in the capital city’s highest office.
“As it stands today, it is certainly my intent to run again,” Lumumba told reporters. “If anything changes, I’ll notify you.”
Throughout his first two terms as mayor, Lumumba has made national headlines for the Jackson water crisis that left over 100,000 people without clean drinking water for more than a month, ultimately ending in a third-party manager taking over the city’s water and sewer operations.
He and the city council have also been at constant odds over hiring a contractor to collect residents’ trash, resulting in a one-year emergency order being approved in April for New Orleans-based company Richard’s Disposal to collect waste following an 18-day hiatus.
The cherry on top throughout Lumumba’s political career has been a worsening crime epidemic in which Jackson reached triple-digit homicides for a fourth consecutive year in 2023. Over his first six years in office, the homicide rate nearly tripled, going from 35.63 per 100,000 residents in 2017 to 92.1 per 100,000 residents in 2022. In response, efforts have been made by the state to reduce crime.
The mayor has also been met with issues on the education front. A decline in enrollment throughout the city has forced the Jackson Public School’s Board of Trustees to vote in favor of closing or consolidating over a dozen schools this year. Over the past decade, JPS has reported a decline in enrollment totaling close to 10,000 students and over 400 staffing vacancies.
At this time, no other candidates have tossed their hats in the ring to challenge Lumumba.
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