BY DENISE MAYCOCK
Tribune Freeport Reporter
WHILE many Free National Movement supporters in Grand Bahama are reserving their comments over the leadership battle, some believe that Loretta Butler-Turner’s decision will deepen democracy in the party.
Mrs Butler-Turner, deputy leader of the FNM, announced last week her intention to run for leadership at the FNM’s national convention on November 21.
Kevin Morris, chairperson of the FNM West Grand Bahama Constituency Association, said that there is no discrimination as it relates to party leadership.
“All FNMs have the opportunity to aspire to be leader or to run for any office. Mrs Butler-Turner’s announcement is a sign of the democracy process in our party. When we go to convention democracy will be at its best, and the best man or woman may win,” said Mr Morris.
Don Martin, chairperson of the FNM East Grand Bahama Constituency Association, agrees that it will deepen democracy in the FNM.
“She has good character and would make a good leader, and Dr Hubert Minnis as well,” he said. “At the end of the day, I don’t have a problem with any of them,” he said.
When asked if he thinks the country is ready for a female prime minister, Mr Martin said that when it comes to leadership gender should not matter.
“There are a lot of people - women and men out there in the PLP and FNM - that have good leadership qualities. I have no problem whether that person is a female or male,” he said.
Wilfred Bevans, chairperson of the FNM Central Grand Bahama Constituency Association, said it is good that Mrs Butler-Tuner is offering herself for leadership.
“I think it would be good for the party; it (the battle) will start to get everyone energised,” he said.
Mr Bevans said Mrs Butler-Turner and Dr Minnis are both good leaders.
However, some Grand Bahama residents believe that the country is not ready for a female prime minister.
“I do not believe that women are suited to run the country,” said Celia Mackey. “I think that is the job for a man.”
While Mrs Butler-Turner seems to be a very strong independent woman, she said the Bible says that men are the head.
Donna Jones said there is nothing wrong with women wanting to be leaders, noting that women are more educated, independent and have the ability to lead.
She said that that are many women in politics who have proven themselves to be good leaders in the PLP and FNM.