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Did The Plp Hoodwink The Voters?

PLP GOVERNMENT members can wipe that look of doe-eyed innocence from their faces when they express alarm at what they claim they are just discovering about this country's deficit.

This ruse in our opinion is just a clumsy excuse to take an escape route through the back door from the Bahamian people to whom, during the election campaign, they promised the world and more besides. The PLP were out to win an election and in true PLP-style they were going to win it at any price -- yes, right up to making impossible promises to the electorate.

Now they can't keep most of those promises and already they are starting to shave, to twist, to talk about we didn't mean this, and we didn't mean that... wiggle, twist, lick the cow bell and do the limbo dance right out the back door. Ooops, so sorry, my people we just didn't realise... the Treasury is bare.

Before going to the people, Prime Minister Christie should have sat down with the bankers to find out if they would be prepared to join government in a plan to help Bahamians who had defaulted on their home mortgages. Would the banks agree, for example, to write off 100 per cent of unpaid interest and fees for all those facing foreclosure?

According to Mr Christie, and what he in fact told the electorate, "this should be acceptable to the banks as they would already have made provisions against these losses." Before making this statement to the thousands of Bahamians waving the yellow pom-poms at the various PLP rallies, was this a correct statement made on behalf of the banks?

"Therefore, writing off the unpaid interest and fees would have no immediate financial impact on the banks," Mr Christie told the suffering Bahamians, who had over borrowed and lost. Did Mr Christie confirm this with the banks, or did he give an assurance to his supporters in the hope of their vote? If he had no prior discussions with the banks, how could he make such a commitment on their behalf?

Had Mr Christie consulted any of the principals who he was committing to his government's 10-point plan of delivery before taking it to the people as a done deal?

He claims that the plan was well thought out and that his party had "consulted some bankers in the Bahamas on it, and other experts on it". He did not say who these "bankers" or "experts" were.

Obviously from the reaction of those who we would have expected him to have consulted, the answer is no, although they refused to speak for publication. And, of course, Moody's Investment Services let it quickly be know that this was no Mad Hatter's ball, but serious business that could lead to a further downgrading of the Bahamas' credit rating if implemented. Moody's pointed out that with economic growth and recovery a top priority, the last thing the Bahamas needed was to send the wrong message that would deter foreign direct investment.

And now we have the Christie government's two financial gurus pooh-poohing the Moody statement as "erroneous" and "flawed." Moody's criticism they said was based on conjecture, not fact.

Of course, this is not what the PLP said when last year Moody's downgraded the Bahamas' rating from "stable" to "negative" because of the mounting debt accrued over the past decade. As far as the then Opposition PLP were concerned at that time Moody's was the best thing since sliced bread. The downgrading, said the PLP, had "confirmed government's (FNM) mismanagement."

And now Deputy Prime Minister Philip "Brave" Davis is trying to get us to believe that his government, while in Opposition did not really know what was going on with government's finances.

"All I can say," said Mr Davis, "is that we are concerned about what we are finding out to be the deficit to date.

"During the course of our campaign and having regard to what we observed we anticipate a deficit in the neighbourhood of $300 million and it is appearing now that it is much more than that, which is a big concern going forward into the fiscal year 2012/2013."

Like a Greek chorus, this was the prelude to: So, sorry folks, we cannot keep all of our promises -- cut backs have been forced upon us by that wicked, over-spending FNM government.

If this is true then where was Mr Davis and his confreres when all government loans were being voted in the House of Assembly?

According to Dr Hubert Minnis, leader-elect of the FNM, "every loan that went to parliament they agreed to, they voted in favour of. So if they were following as they should have been, then they'd know what's outstanding out there."

The Opposition, although in opposition, is always in a strong position because they control the House's Finance Committee, and if anything was going wrong, they were the gatekeepers whose duty it was to blow the whistle.

So no one can plead ignorance -- especially readers of this column -- of the country's financial position. In our opinion the borrowing was forced on the Ingraham government - as on all world governments-- by the global economic meltdown. However, this country can afford no more borrowing.

To make Bahamians believe otherwise is going to be the new government's undoing.

Comments

Observer 2 years, 5 months ago

Long after there was no 'working committee' in the parliament, the Ingraham led administration was spending money, which has to be borrowed. The parliament had been dissolved, yet contracts for substantial amounts were being executed. How many contracts were executed in the period between the dissolution of parliament to 7th May, 2012; and for what aggregate amount?

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concernedcitizen 2 years, 5 months ago

yes there were 24 million that the PLP can cancel if they want ,,there were 9 budget meetings under the FNM ,the oppisition controls the finance commitee ,,the PLP new the shape of our finances ,they talked about it constaintly during there campaign

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Cc 2 years, 5 months ago

Any dimwit who actually believed that the PLp could significantly assist them in their mortgage payments deserves a swift kick in the you-know-what. Are there actually Bahamians who bought this crap? I want to meet one of them.

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concernedcitizen 2 years, 5 months ago

christie is between a rock and a hard place now ,if they got to hurl us deeper in to debt they will ,they wiil basically guaranting 250million to the banks ,thats debt ,,or they will scrap some cash, pay off about 20 peoples mortgages and parade them before the press constantly

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dacy 2 years, 5 months ago

IF THE BANKS DIDNT HAVE THE COURAGE TO SPEAK OUT THEN ALL THEIR MORTGAGES SHOULD DEFAULT

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concernedcitizen 2 years, 5 months ago

the banks have been speaking out ,,sometimes silence is the loudest noise you will here

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notsogullible 2 years, 5 months ago

HOODWINKED, RUN AMUCK AND LIED TO, because in the PLP, they only create empty promises and scandal ...

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