By LAMECH JOHNSON
Tribune Staff Reporter
PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts was tight-lipped yesterday on mounting debate surrounding leadership succession within the party.
When contacted by The Tribune for a response to the suggestion of Tall Pines MP Leslie Miller last week that Prime Minister Perry Christie should not offer himself as leader of the PLP at the next party convention, Mr Roberts said: “I don’t respond to nonsense.”
“There are other stories to write about but with the media, it’s always politics, politics, politics,” he added.
Last week Mr Miller, in a guest appearance on the More 94 FM radio show “Real Talk Live” with host Ortland Bodie, recalled the prime minister’s own stance on “two-term” appointments as the nation’s leader.
“I am hoping that he still believes that and at some point in time he would see the wisdom in serving out his two terms, moving off the scene and allowing others who still have the vibrancy and capability to move this country forward,” Mr Miller said last week.
“But that is his decision, not mine. Each one of us has to make a decision for ourselves.”
When asked if he agreed with the sentiments expressed by Mr Miller, Mr Roberts said that the MP and others “are entitled to their opinion but it doesn’t mean you have to get my response.”
Mr Roberts then declined to offer any further comment.
When the matter of leadership succession arose in February 2014, Mr Roberts said that there would be widespread support for Mr Christie remaining leader of the PLP in 2017, especially if former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham returns to the political fray as some speculate. Mr Ingraham retired as leader of the Free National Movement and North Abaco MP after his party lost the 2012 general election.
Deputy Prime Minister Philip “Brave” Davis, Tourism Minister Obie Wilchcombe, Foreign Affairs Minister Fred Mitchell, and Education Minister Jerome Fitzgerald have been named by party insiders as possible successors to Mr Christie.
A week ago, Mr Wilchcombe revealed he has interest in leading the PLP and if he had the chance to become prime minister he would take it.
Then on Tuesday, Mr Davis said that he was “ready for the job” if there was a vacancy. Both men said their plans depended on whether Mr Christie offered himself for re-election.
Mr Mitchell remained tight-lipped on the matter when asked and Mr Fitzgerald has not yet offered comment on the issue.
The PLP’s convention is set for the end of October when all positions will be available for contest.