By KHRISNA VIRGIL
Deputy Chief Reporter
PROGRESSIVE Liberal Party Chairman Bradley Roberts yesterday denied that the organisation has attempted to entice voters by attaching money to PLP paraphernalia.
Mr Roberts told The Tribune any assertion that suggests otherwise is “political mischief”.
“That is absolute stupidity,” Mr Roberts said. “People claim Jesus Christ is coming back tomorrow also. I wish we had money to give around (otherwise) we would keep it for ourselves.”
Mr Roberts was contacted by The Tribune after a photograph of a PLP flag with a $100 bill attached to it went viral on social media and messaging platform WhatsApp.
This comes as campaign finance concerns are likely to be a mainstay for the 2017 election campaign cycle, with Cabinet minister and Fox Hill MP Fred Mitchell warning Bahamians to “follow the money trail” in reference to opposition candidates.
Mr Mitchell underscored the critical impact campaign financing had on the political independence and integrity of a candidate during a mini-rally at Claridge Park on Saturday.
As he raised speculation over the campaign of a Freeport candidate, the Fox Hill MP identified five sources for political contributions, and warned supporters to be critical of candidates that accepted large sums of money from unknown sources.
“I want you all to follow the money trail,” Mr Mitchell said during the event. “There is a candidate in Freeport who is spending money like it’s going out of style. When people spend money, there has got to be some visible means of support. Where is the money coming from?
“In this country, there are only a couple of sources for political contributions - the white rich Bahamian, the people in Lyford Cay, the numbers boys, or your own money, or someone is contributing from outside the country, that’s the last thing. So the question is when you start spending large sums of money and it doesn’t come from one of those sources, you have to ask yourself where is it coming from?”
Mr Mitchell said: “And if it’s coming from someone we don’t know, the question is who will you be working for if you get elected to office? Next time I come on this stage, I’ll finish this story but I tell them, I tell you and I leave it to you to follow the money trail.
“When or if you happen to get into the office, who will you be working for? The Bahamian people or the people paying for the tune?”