By SANCHESKA BROWN
Tribune Staff Reporter
PLP CHAIRMAN Bradley Roberts yesterday accused Opposition Leader Dr Hubert Minnis of being “unstable” and “turning his back on women’s rights” by declaring he will not support the four gender equality Constitutional bills.
In a statement, Mr Roberts said the latest “Jekyll and Hyde like episode of flip-flopping and backtracking” by Dr Minnis on the four Constitutional bills currently before Parliament proves once again that he is unstable in his ways, does not support equal rights for women nor does he support equality for all under the law.
Mr Roberts said less than a month ago, Dr Minnis was fully onboard with the bills after an exhaustive process with the government and so he was fully aware of and in full agreement with the bills. So it was unusual but not surprising, when Dr Minnis “flip-flopped” in the House of Assembly.
“But, lo and behold,three weeks later and without any change to the bills to which he fully agreed, he is now saying that ‘where there is fear and doubt, there is disaster. I am not prepared to sit here and change the constitution in a fashion to encourage or to bring forth total disaster for future generations.’ He failed to explain the nature of the disaster he referred to, but made it patently clear to all and sundry and Bahamians everywhere that his word cannot be trusted and that he does not stand on any principle,” Mr Roberts said.
“Additionally, with his new position and theme of “fear,” “doubt” and “disaster,” Dr. Minnis is demonstrating uncertainty about and has effectively turned back the clock on women’s rights and equality for all under the law. This irrational outburst in Parliament on Wednesday, 13th August, should not come as a surprise to anybody as this is the latest in a very familiar, albeit disturbing pattern of behaviour that calls his leadership and general decision making process into serious question. His leadership behaviour on other important national issues such as Value Added Tax (VAT), legalising the web shop gaming industry and the introduction of Stem Cell research and therapy demonstrated an eerily similar pattern. The record clearly shows that Dr. Minnis has flip-flopped on virtually every national issue facing The Bahamas.”
Mr Roberts said the PLP supports women’s rights, gender equality and equality for all under the law.
He encouraged all Bahamians to become educated about and place their support behind the constitutional bills currently before Parliament that seek “to deepen our democracy by expanding personal rights and freedoms to all Bahamians.”
Although initially pledging the support of the Free National Movement, Dr Minnis on Wednesday said he took exception to all of the amendments and his party is not “prepared to support the changes to the Constitution that would lead to disaster.”