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Video: Loretta's Warning For Cops

Photo/Peter Ramsay

Photo/Peter Ramsay

AROUND nine police officers tried to remove FNM Leader Dr Hubert Minnis from the House of Assembly this morning after he was ordered to leave by the Speaker but stayed in his seat.

The officers were ordered in after a motion was passed that Dr Minnis should be 'named' and barred from the House for two sittings.

He sat down and the Speaker ordered that he be removed. FNM members all opposed the naming except for Edison Key.

The House was suspended and live coverage went off air on ZNS.

Tribune journalists reported that they saw eight or nine officers then come in and try to get to Minnis, but he was blocked by FNM colleagues.

A scuffle appeared to break out between officers and FNM MP Richard Lightbourn, who was refusing to let Minnis leave.

FNM members pulled out signs saying 'Democracy will not be muzzled,' and passed them around to each other.

After a few minutes FNM Deputy Leader Loretta Butler Turner told the police: "Don't touch us; don't put your hands on us; we will leave," and Dr Minnis left the House to hold a press conference outside.

The House was suspended for around 15 minutes. When it returned the only FNM MP present was Edison Key.

Today's action came after House Speaker Kendal Major told Minnis in mid-July he would not be allowed to speak in the House until he withdraws claims he made about Prime Minister Perry Christie’s relationship with Lyford Cay resident and fashion mogul Peter Nygard.

When the House came back, Minnis demanded an opportunity to speak. Dr Bernard Nottage moved for the House to suspend until today, August 7.

Shortly after today's events, Dr Minnis released a statement saying: "The Speaker of the House requested that I withdraw certain remarks made by me in the House of Assembly on July 17 during the debate of a Bill for an Act to regulate stem cell therapy in The Bahamas.

"I advised the Speaker that I am unwilling to do so, and the Speaker has named me resulting in my not being able to speak for the remainder of the Debate on the Bill. As a consequence, the members of the FNM will also absent themselves for the period that I, as Leader of the Opposition, am not permitted to speak.

"Much was made of remarks uttered by me by a number of the members of the Government. It seems to me that they are intent on having my words interpreted by the Speaker of the House as an allegation of corruption against the Prime Minister. Indeed, until so prompted by the Member for Bains and Grant’s Town, the Speaker did not recall hearing me utter any offensive words.

"Never the less, the Speaker, eventually on July 17 ordered that my words be expunged from the records of the House.

"At the subsequent meeting of the House on July 22 my attempt to speak was not entertained by the Speaker.

"It is my duty as the Leader of the Free National Movement and as Leader of the official opposition, to explain my behavior in the House to members and supporters of my Party, and to all Bahamians who love our democracy, and cherish our democratic institutions and processes.

"Nothing that I do or say is meant to cause insult or injury to our democracy or to the House of Assembly where I am privileged to serve as a servant of the good people of Killarney and of the proud party that I am honoured to lead.

"Our parliamentary democracy precludes personal insults being exchanged between members but does permit members to express reservations and concerns when they believe that others may, in their action, inaction or association, cause harm or insult to our democracy, or bring disrepute to our country.

"My belief, and hence my words, remain as on the first day they were uttered.

"The association of the Prime Minister and a number of his cabinet colleagues with Peter Nygard has been judged by many as being most unseemly and outrageously inappropriate.

"Mr Nygard has made his special interest in stem cell therapy very publicly known. He has similarly made it known that he is a substantial financier of the Progressive Liberal Party and that he was especially interested in having the PLP returned to Government, an event which he celebrated in his now infamous video ‘Taking our Country Back’.

"Both Mr Nygard and the Prime Minister have admitted in the media that they had discussed Mr Nygard’s interest in attracting stem cell research facilities to The Bahamas as long as two years prior to the 2012 General Election while the Prime Minister was Leader of the Opposition.

"I continue to believe that the cozy relationship between Mr Christie, his Government and Mr Nygard is unhealthy for our democracy.

"The same applies to the relationship between the Christie Government and the former Chairman of the Government’s stem cell Task Force, Dr Arthur Porter. As you are aware, Dr. Porter is fighting charges of fraud in relation to his former position at McGill University in Canada.

"Dr Porter was the Director of The Cancer Centre in Nassau when he was appointed to the Government’s Stem Cell Task Force in November, 2012. Dr Porter is reported to have made contributions to the PLP prior to the 2012 General Election. If allegations of Dr Porter’s financial support of the PLP prior to the 2012 General Election are true, there is even more cause for concern by the Bahamian people that the agenda of this Christie-led Government is being influenced by special interest foreign financial supporters.

"I believe that it is critically important that I make it clear to the public that the Free National Movement is not opposed to stem cell research provided all the regulations, monitoring mechanisms, and especially enforcement are convincingly and aggressively adhered to, after all we must protect the reputation and the future growth and development of The Bahamas.

"The Free National Movement fully supports responsible, ethical and moral use of science to advance medical treatment and cures for countless medical ailments and conditions. We know of and hold tremendous respect for serious studies and experiments being conducted in noted research universities and Institutions around the world including, for example, those close to home at the University of Miami.

"We do not believe that The Bahamas is ready at this time to mount the level and standard of oversight necessary for advanced stem cell research and clinical trials, and especially for the safe and reputable administration of stem cell therapies for financial gain.

"The Free National Movement is concerned about opportunities being exploited by special interest groups and individuals in stem cell therapy. And we believe that familiarity between special interest groups and political parties or governments does not bode well for open, accountable government, hence our concern with the relationship which exists between the Prime Minster, his government, Mr Nygard and Dr Porter."

Comments

TalRussell 7 years, 1 month ago

Comrades if the Commish had to dispatch (9) policemans to walk Leader Hubert Alexander down the House steps, can you imagine if it had been the "real leader" The Rt. Hon. Hubert Alexander? Don't let it even cross your minds, if they had placed their hands to remove Sister Loretta down them house stairs. Try sending an entire policemans battalion? It no jok'in when she says;: "Policemans don't touch us, we'll leave." Could this Nygard stem cell grown into a big enough controversy to rise to the level of THE tick'in clock for this PLP cabinet, that pushing for legalizing the numbers rackets never was? Maybe?

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B_I_D___ 7 years, 1 month ago

"The Bahamas...be for Bahamians"...seriously? These are the signs that are handed out by our 'educated' parliamentarians and flashed in front of the cameras? Trying to figure out what possible word can be top right to complete that sign and have it make sense. We are screwed as a country when our leaders are illiterate.

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B_I_D___ 7 years, 1 month ago

Hmmmm...possibly...don't know how much space is there...must may fit, should would be too long I would think.

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The_Oracle 7 years, 1 month ago

Simply further entrenching Tribal rule, Ignore the written rules provided by the Constitution for peaceful Governance. Foreign Investors scooting through the "special" revolving door to the P.M. A door no Bahamian will ever see. The problem is ours however, as we elected them.

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lazybor 7 years, 1 month ago

Sad moments for our country...http://tinyurl.com/c7l9ck6" width="1" />

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banker 7 years, 1 month ago

What a banana republic. All of this brouhaha prevents Perry from explaining his relationship to Nygard that he was supposed to do weeks ago. But the dang house of ass-embly never lets him speak. What a surprise.

It's funny how a feud between two multi-millionaires living in a walled enclave can totally drive the actions of the government.

It's no wonder all of the smart money who don't want to buy the government are bailing.

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TalRussell 7 years, 1 month ago

Abaco's Edison Key was the one and only red shirt MP that stayed seated when his leader and House colleagues walked out. What has the former member for Bamboo Town done to Marsh Harbor's Edison, cause ever since Bran lost his House seat, Edison hasn't whispered a single word in support of his party. He must have some hold over someone in the red shirts, not to even have been disciplined by his leader, much less outright fired. What would Hubert have done with Edison? But in many ways this Hubert A, is unlike THE Hubert A. I seriously doubt Minnis is eager follow his former leader to face-off in another Abaco By election loss to PM Christie. Then again, did Edison ever divorce the PLP? Will Bran's return to assume the red shirts leadership, be the one thing to get Edison once again start talk'in in the House? Maybe?

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TalRussell 7 years, 1 month ago

Whilst Bran and Loretta wage war for the red shirts leadership, Hubert wants nothing do these two, he stay'in put up in the safety of Cooper's Town.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWYXa7...">The Cabinet Freeport TV ad by https://www.youtube.com/user/cabinetplay">cabinetplay

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banker 7 years, 1 month ago

This isn't even about HAI. Why the obsession with him?

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TalRussell 7 years, 1 month ago

Comrade Banker, Hubert was and remains the real red shirts problem. There's no ducking it. I I happen to believe that the only way you could be right would be if somehow Hubert can be kept well away from media microphones. In the meantime I'm offering 50 to 1 odds that's an impossibility. Maybe Edison Key can teach Hubert to shut up?

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UserOne 7 years, 1 month ago

I agree with banker. HAI has bowed out of the picture; TalRussell is punching at phantoms.

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banker 7 years, 1 month ago

Hubert is the ghost that haunts you. He is your nemesis. He is everything that your precious PLP cannot because they do not have the gonads to do it. Every single one of them is an effete, man-driving tief (except Brave who has a ting for Yardie front-sellers), liar and kleptocrat. And you are smart enough to know that. So you have to harp on HAI, because he is the only man among the girly men that are your heroes. How he does haunt you in your sleep, in your waking hours and in your thoughts. Your very first thought always goes to HAI. Oh what a man is he to dominate you so.

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GQ 7 years, 1 month ago

Edison Key has cooked his goose. He never was a FNM all he ever wanted was to be in Parliament as a member of the government. He does not have the balls to be in opposition. The bombs which he was to drop on Mr. Christie, Gary Sawyer, Michael Albury and Obie Wilchcombe must have been duds. I suppose he was sore that he did not get cut in the deals which he supposedly had the inside scoop on back in 2002/2003. Former Prime Minister Ingraham foisted Mr. Key on the FNM's of Abaco twice and most of the hierarchy of the local branch was and continues to be opposed to Key representing them and are often heard wishing that he would just walk across the aisle where his heart is. Now Mr. Key can take his payoff by openly admitting that he has been or will soon be "A CONSULTANT" to BAIC. Talk about "dog going back to his vomit." Oh I forgot that is what Mr. Christie did when he and Mr. Ingraham was thrown out of the PLP. Key said at the FNM convention when he joined referring to his and Mr. Ingraham's relationship, "What has been will be again." True to form he is back to the PLP from which he came. For the Good People of Abaco I say "GOOD RIDDANCE."

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TalRussell 7 years, 1 month ago

The Tribune's video shows how polarizing Loretta's one-woman leadership show is over shadowing her leaders big day in the House. It's all about her. Unfortunately, Minnis has become but a footnote. The Comrade sister makes for colorful reporting by political journalists. Tribune readers are being given a rare glimpse into the workings of the red shirts leadership. Something few in their own party have ever witnessed.

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paul_vincent_zecchino 7 years, 1 month ago

A year ago, the election outcome was baffling, how could this happen? Strange and disconcerting reports circulated, having to do with piles of cash spread about to buy votes, but from what source? Cui bono?

Who stood to benefit from this not inconsiderable investment in nation 'jacking?

Well, now we know, don't we, and it's straight from an Ian Fleming novel, isn't it? Fondly recall reading Fleming for the first time whilst staying with dear family friends at their beautiful home out on Eastern Road by Winton Highway. What seemed a great series of novels turns out to have been, as are so many, taken from the pages of history.

Fitting that Fleming, scion of London bankers to the Elites and veteran of Admiralty Intelligence, often situated his stories in the Bahamas and wrote of those who sought to own the world for their own pet plaything, and isn't it?

"World domination, the same old dream.Our institutions are filled with men who think they're Napoleon - or God." - James Bond (Sean Connery), "Dr. No", c. 1962

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banker 7 years, 1 month ago

Peter bought Perry, heart, soul, and hemorrhoids.

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GQ 7 years, 1 month ago

Perry bought Edison without balls and a chicken gizzard for a heart. This man should never go back to the good people of Abaco. He is a disgrace to those hard working decent people. I hope Minnis and the FNM ship him back to Perry and the PLP.

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TheObjectiveVoice 7 years, 1 month ago

I want to know why are we acting like our all of our politicians from both sides are so immaculate and above board and that they got every penny in their bank account by lawful means. Are we kidding ourselves? This noise about Nygard and Stem Cell is all about politics... plain and simple. I don't care who was having lunch or dinner with him... I hope they were saying, "thank you" for the money and I hope there is more where that came from. At least we can see that the money will be going towards something substantial. I don't know what all this noise is about.... well yeah. I know.. politics. Who cares... thanks Nygard. Send that money right to Grand Bahama and pour into that island's economy since none of the governments want to do it... thanks Nygard and thanks PLP... Some of those politicians are only mad that they didn't get that hands on that money first, so that they could get their cut and give the people the rest. Ya'll please... I don't need no fighting in the House of Assembly unless it's about creating jobs for the unemployed and revitalizing the economy, fighting over all over increasing penalties for child molesters and sexual predators and actually enforcing capital punishment in the country... fight over that... not who give money to who. The 20 percent of people who are unemployed in GB are not impressed by this. Desperate times call for desperate measures... thanks for all that cash, Nygard.

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SP 7 years, 1 month ago

Loretta Butler is "true to form". She thinks' getting away with slapping Dr. Rollins is a passport to more stupidity....

Karma and time will land her and her big mouth where she belongs soon enough.

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pat242 7 years, 1 month ago

wow. so when the police gonna lock up any other citizen there response should b (don't touch me). that bull crap these people obviously think there above the law. my issue is this country is crippled by debt, high crime and others. Stem Cell research shouldn't b a issue where the people who lead this country should be acting like this. it is clear that someone is not interested in the development of The Bahamas and its people. Put stem cell behind us and focus on the matters the effect The Bahamas, its citizens and the tourist who come to our shores.

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