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Bishop Ellis: Gibson Shown No Respect

Former Minister of Labour and National Insurance Shane Gibson pictured arriving at court.

Former Minister of Labour and National Insurance Shane Gibson pictured arriving at court.

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Bishop Neil C Ellis

By NICO SCAVELLA

Tribune Staff Reporter

nscavella@tribunemedia.net

BISHOP Neil C Ellis has lamented the “inhumanity” shown to former Cabinet Minister Shane Gibson before his recent arraignment, claiming that the former MP’s treatment was inconsistent with the concept of “basic respect for human dignity”.

Bishop Ellis, in a pastoral letter to members of the Mount Tabor Church, regretted Gibson being made by police to “hop” up the steps of the Magistrate’s Court complex for his arraignment despite suffering an injury “which required the aid of crutches for support”.

Bishop Ellis’ letter was in reference to the former national insurance and labour minister’s arraignment in a Magistrate’s Court last Thursday on 36 bribery and extortion-related charges.

Before his arraignment, Gibson had voluntarily presented himself to the Central Detective Unit (CDU) on Wednesday to assist officers with an ongoing investigation.

Gibson’s attorney, Anthony McKinney, QC, has reportedly said his client injured his foot during a recent boating trip and that his limping was “not the result of any brutality”.

The next day, after he was taken to Magistrate’s Court, Gibson reportedly got out of a police car using crutches. He reportedly used those crutches to enter the nearby police station.

A short time later Gibson left the station in handcuffs and no crutches. With the assistance of officers, Gibson limped and hopped his way up the stairs to court. He was later seen using the walking aides while at the Supreme Court for his bail hearing.

In his letter, Bishop Ellis, senior pastor of Mount Tabor Church, noted it was “painful” to watch the arraignment of a man he said is a “faithful member” of the Mount Tabor congregation.

The politician’s wife, Pastor Jackie Gibson, is also an active member of Mount Tabor.

Charging that the “laws of man” can only be just “when they conform with the laws of God and are enforced with basic respect for human dignity,” Bishop Ellis called on “all relevant authorities” to “question whether the manner in which Mr Gibson was handled was consistent with this principle.”

“I am aware that Mr Gibson was called in for questioning by the police,” Bishop Ellis said. “I am advised that just prior to this he suffered an injury which required the aid of crutches for support. The videos I saw show that while being escorted by several officers to his arraignment, Mr Gibson was made to abandon his crutches in order to be handcuffed behind his back.

“Observers report and video affirms that he limped along the street and literally hopped up the steps to the level of the court.

“Based on the totality of the circumstances . . . and Mr Gibson’s long-standing service to multiple sectors of our community and the nation itself, I have struggled mightily to understand what risk was being protected against that required the measure of inhumanity shown to Mr Gibson,” Bishop Ellis, who noted he was out of the country, wrote.

“We are well served to be guided always by the simple admonition of St Paul to the Galatians that we are to ‘do unto others as we would have them do unto us.’ This simple concept is so powerful that it is central to our shared values of civility. Any breach of this basic Christian principle, especially in the exercise of public duty, can result in serious and long lasting negative consequences for our nation.”

Last week, Official Opposition Leader Philip “Brave” Davis expressed outrage at the circumstances surrounding Gibson’s arraignment, and noted Progressive Liberal Party supporters will be asked to “come together shortly to demonstrate our contempt for these inhumane actions.”

Comments

realfreethinker 4 months ago

So where was this clown when Sen Bostwick,and senator Fred Ramsey were hancuffed and taken to court. Oops my bad they were FNMs. Carry your big cut Ellis. Rank hypocrasy.

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BMW 4 months ago

I hope he does the Bank Lane shuffle when they look at his books. Pulpit swindler

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realfreethinker 4 months ago

Another fooking charlatan. Man of God my ass

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TalRussell 4 months ago

Comrade Bishop Neil C Ellis cannot be faulted for his having lamented of the public display former Cabinet Minister Shane was subjected to on his way his recent court arraignment, But the Bishop's claim may have been but his first public expression and is inconsistent with his years silence when it comes to the much too often public showcasing that many others have been subjected to by policeman's court escorts. It's not like the good Bishop does not have a TV or reads the newspapers? And, by Shane's own lawyer's account - he was 'spared' and not subjected to a policeman's 'whip ass' while in policeman's station lockup. In the end the mindset of the political bosses in power are what is really being showcased and it also happened under all former PLP and red shirts administrations. OJ did not go to jail for taking his stuff back. He went to jail for his past deeds. I guess you can say OJ, left bad taste in mouths many people?

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licks2 4 months ago

OJ went to jail for armed robbery. . .not for his past deeds. . .he was tried for killing his wife. . .set free. . .retried and found liable and charged!! He was out and walking around after his legitimate trials. . .then he robbed persons who bought his stuff and he went to get them back because the buyers did not pay him for them! You are too old to talk so dang stupid at times!

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TalRussell 4 months ago

Comrade. I and millions others believe that the Vegas robbery case against OJ was bogus justice.The irony is OJ was acquitted of the crime of a double homicide that he was guilty of and he was convicted of a stupidity robbery crime he stupidly innocent of. Nine years in jail for being stupid is a crime in itself?

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concernedcitizen 4 months ago

Tal ,,innocent ,,the whole thing was recorded ,,including OJ saying "nobody f ,,king move and give me my f,,,king stuff back " never did he say to his boys , put down your guns .OJ had the guy selling it so he would not have to pay his civil judgement ,,theef theef from theef ,,God laugh

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ThisIsOurs 4 months ago

All true, but I believe Tal is also right, his 20 year sentence was payback for the murder they believed he committed and got away with

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concernedcitizen 4 months ago

They offered him 3 years in a plea deal and he did not take it ,,,

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Tarzan 4 months ago

You and millions of others believe the world is flat as well. That does not make it so.

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licks2 4 months ago

I guess that is classical PLP reasoning. . .OJ got locked up because of a witch hunt!! Yinna PLP does really "ak" like yall een gat no sense. . .I guess thats why yinna PLP dem are now gern ta jail by the truck load. . .the FNM mussie trying to get back at yinna for being such a good party in government!! Chile please. . .give it a break!

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BMW 4 months ago

typical plunder loot pillage living in the past just like fweddy boy

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DillyTree 4 months ago

When Mr. Shane Gibson shows the Bahamian people some respect, maybe he'll get some in return. Bishop Ellis should be ashamed himself for hanging Gibson's criminal behaviour on the people and not on Mr. Gibson himself. Doesn't the Bible teach anything about taking responsibility for one's actions?

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BahamasForBahamians 4 months ago

Bishop Ellis is spot on with his views.

I would like to see what the commentary on this forum will entail if these charges do not stick and if these gentlemen are exonerated...especially given they appear to be convicted in the public forum already.

I would like to know what the 3-7 FNM commentators, inclusive of J.Moss through his fake accounts, will explain to The Bahamian people when the enormous costs of pursuing these gentleman are saddled onto the tax payers... especially if these cases are unsuccessful.

Surely when VAT increases, the astronomical costs added to the AG's office within the last few weeks has to be included in the justification.

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licks2 4 months ago

You know and I know that they gern ta jail. . .only PLP lawyers are trying the case in public. . .Davis, Mortimer, Munroe and Gomez. . .but however you try to spin this one. . .you and I know that them crooks gern st8 ta jail!!

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concernedcitizen 4 months ago

As corrupt as we are they may go free ,after some judges get paid , but innocent ,,no way

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jackbnimble 4 months ago

And I would like to see the commentary if the charges DO stick!

That should make the conversation very interesting.

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PastorTroy 4 months ago

This blind pimp needs ST(EFF)U! This is politics 'sir', not religion, this is our fault, we give these snake oil salesmen/women too much attention. The fact this man (Ellis) is profiting from a debunked colonialist doctrine, raping the wealth of the poor, uninformed/uneducated Bahamians should render his comment nil. But let us be honest here, sometimes, unfortunately, you are judged by the company you keep, in this case not so. #THEIVES!

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BahamasForBahamians 4 months ago

Thats the spirit. condemn the church since your views do not align with the Bishop..LOL while your at it remove the christian values from the preamble of the constitution.

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realfreethinker 4 months ago

The church and the bishop should be condemned

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PastorTroy 4 months ago

That's pure ASSumption on your part, my views do not 'align' with neither. ST(EFF)U you PLP whoremonger!

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licks2 4 months ago

Fernander, Gomez and Ellis. . .next we will hear from McPhee. . .and them two who names start wit P and B! The PLP big guns in the churches. . .their lawyers, preachers and politicians pleading with the people but they cannot get anyone to "check for them". . .that party IS dead dead. . .ITS THE PEOPLES' TIME!!!

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Well_mudda_take_sic 4 months ago

Neil Ellis is no more a Bishop than many of the Catholic Bishops around the world who like to play with little .......... Oh well, you get the picture!

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CatIslandBoy 4 months ago

There is nothing political about these 3 former government officials being charged. It is all about being criminals. Maybe Gibson's arraignment could have been handled with a little more sensitivity, if he was truly suffering from physical limitations. It is possible that Mr. Gibson could be declared Not Guilty by a Jury, but that doesn't mean he is innocent. Let's be real. I don't know how any Bahamian believes that many of these guys go into parliament with a few thousand dollars in assets, but a few years later they are suddenly millionaires. Every dollar of kickback, or bribery, or extortion, is another dollar added to the deficit.

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jackbnimble 4 months ago

I get the not rush to judgment that the church promotes - after all none of us are without sin but Mr. Gibson has put himself in this position and by that I mean the appearance of corruption, starting with the rumours of kickbacks he was getting while Minister of Housing, the Anna Nicole saga that cost him his post.as Minister of Immigration... and then he comes back and now this.

I would have stepped down and not returned after the first very embarrassing scandal.

There is an appearance of corruption with the PLP and most notably with Mr. Gibson and a few others.

Usually if someone is innocent these things do not stick. I find it interesting that so many have this impression of him. Prosecution of persecution.... only time will tell.

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banker 4 months ago

Jeezus -- you leave the Bahamas just fer a minute, and da ting you bin wishin' for most of the last 15 years happens -- corrupt PLP's in irons doing da Bank Lane shuffle -- AND I MISSED IT !! I would have paid to see it. My smilin' face would be front and center, and if he were in spittin' range, he would not only have been hobbling, but he would be wiping goober offa his face.

If he ends up in Fox Hill, I will be sending him soap, just for the entertainment value when it slips out on the floor and he has to bend over to pick it up. Of course, being a PLP, he prolly is used ta bending ova for someone.

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ThisIsOurs 4 months ago

Does anyone know if Bishop Ellis ever preached a sermon against bribery, extortion or corruption in politics over the past five years? I'm shocked to learn Gibson was on the church board

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SP 4 months ago

Gibson being on the church board makes it more so relevant and even imperative to investigate the church boards too! Open their books to forensic investigations and let us see what these so called "religious leaders" are really secretly up to with their high profile political board members!

After all, what should a "church" have to hide?

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BMW 4 months ago

I agree100%!!! Who was first to object to this. Like the elders say " you throw a rock at a pack of potcakes and the one to holler is the one that got hit" Nuf said. Open your books swindler!

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DEDDIE 4 months ago

I do support the FNM in it effort to stamp out corruption but I always hated the parade that takes place on the way to magistrate court. I hated it even more when a group of my workers on the way to the bank was arrested for a marijuana joint in the vehicle. Even though one of them own up to it, they all spend the weekend in jail and was paraded before the cameras. The magistrate at the end of the day allow them all to go free. Persons should only be filmed after a conviction.

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Well_mudda_take_sic 4 months ago

Repost: When arrested/arraigned for charging with a crime, the law from that point is suppose to apply to all in the same way except with regard to any serious safety or health issues that need be considered. That's why we have seen the likes of Whitehead, Wrinkle and Vaslyi in cuffs and shackles doing the so called 'perp walk' or 'Bank Lane shuffle'. The cuffs and shackles are intended to offer protection to the police officers and make escape difficult if not impossible for more violent individuals. Changing the law to treat certain people differently may inadvertently send the wrong message as to the validity of the charges to be made against them. Moral of the story - don't do or allow yourself to get involved with anything that could possibly result in your arrest/arraignment by the police.

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OldFort2012 4 months ago

That is all fine. But if someone is injured, as he seemed to be (have no idea if he was or just faking it for sympathy), then put him in a wheelchair and wheel him in. Or find some other means. Anything humane. Whatever we might think of Gibson, that was a bad picture being put out there by the Bahamas for the world to watch. Not our proudest moment.

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jackbnimble 4 months ago

I've seen this statement printed in the other daily at least twice: "Gibson was seen entering CID for questioning WITHOUT crutches". Someone even commented on social media that he was seen entering the building in a suit with shoes on and NO crutches - the implication in both cases being that he's faking it.

Lol. Just thought I'd put that out there.

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BMW 4 months ago

Ellis you will get no respect from me and the same goes for gibson. To me you are both theives, one by swinging Bahamian people from the pulpit and the other tefin by employment and you looking for F...kin respect. You missing out or what? Chief you really gotta carry your ass and sit small. The every day citizen of this country is treated the same way when arrested and charged for crimes against the state and people of the Bahamas. #LOCK UM UP!!!!!!!!

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SP 4 months ago

Is the servant greater than his master?

What makes Neil Ellis think former Cabinet Minister Shane Gibson should be treated differently than any other citizen brought before the courts?

One would think Ellis the so called pastor would have stood for "righteousness" and condemned the alleged corruption of politicians and anyone else.

Obviously, Ellis is a worshiper of flesh and money, not GOD!

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Bigbellyboy 4 months ago

Another prime example of a crook lamenting the treatment of a crook!

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sealice 4 months ago

Does it look like Shame is trying to not smile... that fool smirk he's making the drama and the spectacle cus that's all the PLP has left BULLSHITTE!!!!

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baldbeardedbahamian 4 months ago

I have lots of respect for Ellis. His business acumen is unmatched amongst the various churchmen in this country. I think that he has made more money from his flock and the people's land given to him by ex-prime-minister perry corrupt Christie than any pastor who came before him. If I had just one tenth of his riches I could retire comfortably. Since he is so rich it must be that God has blessed him and that he speaks for God. In the same way God must have meant Shane Gibson to be blessed with all that money so quickly. I suggest we release Shane and ordain him as a bishop.

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CatIslandBoy 4 months ago

LOL! Some of you are tooo funny. bbb that is a great suggestion!

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Nuway 4 months ago

It is people like Bishop Ellis, that makes the job of hard working, honest pastors so difficult. As the Apostle Paul says in his letter to the Romans 2:24 "No wonder the the Scriptures say that the world speaks evil of God because of you." TLB.

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Bigbellyboy 4 months ago

Organized religion is a giant stone hanging around the neck of the Bahamas and dragging it into financial oblivion. If this country is going to progress, it needs to clearly separate church and state and make mail order bishops like Ellis shut their mouth or go to jail.

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DaGoobs 4 months ago

Shane Gibson, Frank Smith and Kenred Dorsett have not been treated any differently from any other person charged with a crime in a Bahamian court of law. For those that have memories long enough to remember, the "perp" or "Bank Lane" shuffle came about after the girlfriend of a defendant on his way to court on Parliament Street some years ago threw him a gun which he used to run away from his police escort. I've seen the handcuffs and manacles used to transport other men and women to court, some of whom had foot, ankle or leg injuries but not crutches. What makes Gibson, Smith or Dorsett any different from any of these other defendants other than in many cases the others did not have all the high priced legal talent that Gibson, Smith and Dorsett have and the other defendants were not former PLP parliamentarians? I guess being an ex-MP or ex-Senator entitles one to different treatment than every other criminally accused person who has appeared before the courts? To coin an old phrase, who died and made these men kings?

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ThisIsOurs 3 months, 4 weeks ago

We're always somewhat shocked when larger than life people are caught in undesirable situations. We inevitably ask, how dey get dere?. It's called "enabling", over the years Bishop Ellis could have preached many messages, messages about honoring marriage vows, messages about not taking advantage of employees, especially females in your employ. Stop teifin would have been a great message! Have some integrity and build some character. But alas he didn't, his "message" was more about how much political influence he had and how that influence would grow in 2017. All while his flock was running wild through the fields, falling in all kinds of treacherous pits. What manner of shepherd is this?

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