By KHRISNA VIRGIL
Tribune Staff Reporter
FRED Mitchell, Fox Hill MP says he is still open to vying for the leadership of the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) should the vacancy arise.
Speaking to reporters yesterday, Mr Mitchell said he sees no reason why he would not offer himself for party leader when the time comes.
“I keep saying it this way because I don’t want to start a whole other thing again,” he said. “There is no vacancy at the moment, when the vacancy does open there is no reason for me to step back from the breech. But there is no vacancy, so we are only in the realm of speculation. There is no vacancy.
“There is a race for succession going on in the country, transition going on given where we are politically. So everyone is trying to look and see who in the perspective future might emerge as leaders or leader of the country.”
Mr Mitchell explained that while people were well aware of his ambitions, the admission has created an avenue for spectators to guess about what is to come.
“That does not stop people from trying to plot and scheme into the future and say ‘this fella I want to stop him if I can’. So what do you do, you attack intellect, the ideas and say all kinds of things.
“So now the most recent attack here is, because none of that works, is because of his views on this particular subject of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) that disqualifies him and, of course, that’s not what they really mean and I am not going to help them out on this occasion.
“That‘s not what they really mean, but they are trying to pin something on you and say to the Bahamian people you are unfit to go further.”
During the PLP’s convention in 2009, Mr Mitchell’s name was entered into nomination for the leadership of the PLP. After an aggressive campaign leading up to the day of nomination, Mr Mitchell withdrew his name noting that further opportunities for leadership in the party would be forthcoming.
At the time Mr Mitchell said he wanted to win the leadership of the PLP, and also the leadership of the country. He told his supporters, however, that while that desire remains, “such a move at this time will not now serve the long-term interests of the party”.