Yes, I think he will win his seat.
No, I do not think he will win his seat.
201 total votes.
By KHRISNA VIRGIL
Tribune Staff Reporter
MARCO City MP Greg Moss yesterday shot down speculation that he is joining the Free National Movement as he insisted on a definite political run in the 2017 general election as an independent candidate.
Mr Moss said not only did he have the full support of his constituents, he was confident that he could still offer effective representation free of party affiliation.
In a candid discussion with The Tribune the day after announcing he was severing ties with the Progressive Liberal Party, Mr Moss branded the governing party as an “elitist” group not concerned with the plight of the average Bahamian.
He said the party had long abandoned the intended principles of its founder, former Prime Minister Sir Lynden Pindling. While he admitted discontent with the party for some time, the outspoken MP said “the straw that broke the camel’s back” was the 2015/2016 budget now being debated in the House of Assembly.
He spoke to this newspaper the day after announcing he was resigning from the PLP. His resignation letter was sent to Prime Minister Perry Christie, House Speaker Dr Kendal Major and party Chairman Bradley Roberts yesterday.
Mr Christie was not in the House of Assembly when Mr Moss made his announcement.
However, in an interview from Brussels, Belgium with a ZNS reporter yesterday, he did not appear surprised over the departure.
“I truly believed that Greg Moss was on a course that would take him outside of the PLP. I’ve been around long enough to see that,” the prime minister said.
“What the Bahamian people must know is that young men have their own aspirations, their own ambitions and sometimes it takes them outside of the mainstream of a political organisation where there is a series of compromises you have to make for the general good of the organisation. It’s called teamwork. I think the Progressive Liberal Party has done a remarkable job in using the resources available to us, I think it’s a damnable lie or misstatement to say that philosophically we are not acting in the best interests of the people of this country.”
The prime minister added that the party has dealt with defectors before and warned others who might be considering leaving the fold that the PLP will run candidates against them to win their seats.
“Whatever happens in our organisation, our organisation has to deal with it,” Mr Christie told ZNS. “There’s no ill will, it’s just a matter of this happened. You would want people to be a part of the team, you would want them to understand, you would want them to compromise, you’d want them to really play ball so to speak. But if they feel that they must move on, then the party will accommodate that and when the time comes, the party will make decisions as to who will run against them and the party will work assiduously to cause the person that they nominate to win the seat.”
Meanwhile, Mr Moss contends that his beliefs are still theoretically aligned with the PLP.
“But the problem is the party is no longer the party that it purports to be,” the Marco City MP added. “So I have been progressively attempting over the past three years to put forward positions of what our mandate really is supposed to be and more and more it became evident that that was being resisted. In this final budget it became clear to me that would never be embraced.”
“This is the final budget outside of a fully declared election cycle. Next time we have a budget in this House it will be 2016 and we will be in the middle of campaigning clearly. So this was the final opportunity for anything that could approach a bi-partisan budget. I mean that not in the sense of a budget representing two political parties but representing the two diverse constituencies in the country and it certainly isn’t that.”
Asked to recall his biggest disappointment as a member of the PLP, Mr Moss said that the party promised to enhance the lives of Bahamians, a promise so far unfulfilled by the government. He said value added tax (VAT) was the best example of a government that did not care for its people. Mr Moss voted against implementing the tax last year.
“There is a summary of the philosophical position of the PLP (or) what it should be (at least) and that summary has always been to wipe every tear from every eye.
“We are not in the business of wiping tears away from the eyes of the most exposed and the most vulnerable. It has actually been inflicting pain and more tears on those very people that it purports to represent. That is something that has been the gravest disappointment and has become untenable to me.”
In his resignation letter, Mr Moss continued to voice his displeasure with the PLP. He said when he first began to campaign in 2010, he set out with a goal to restore the vision of the PLP as a party to uplift all Bahamians.
“Since being elected as member of Parliament for the Marco City constituency,” the two and half page letter read in part, “I have repeatedly attempted to advance those goals through my firm opposition to any and every form of political corruption and my consistent call for the enactment of legislation to advance the interest of our people.
“After three years of championing and attempting to effect such reforms as a member of the Progressive Liberal Party, the fourth budget communication by the prime minister, which is presently being debated in the House, has confirmed to me that those goals are not shared by the present leadership of the Progressive Liberal Party as a government or as a party.”
Mr Moss’ resignation letter dated June 9, 2015, took immediate effect.