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‘Office Of The Spouse’

photo

Patricia Minnis

By AVA TURNQUEST

Tribune Chief Reporter

aturnquest@tribunemedia.net

Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis’ wife Patricia is pushing for the establishment of her own office in a bid to raise the profile of women leadership in the country.

Mrs Minnis told attendants at a recent luncheon hosted for the spouses of senior government officials that she has already submitted a proposal for an Office of the Spouse of the Prime Minister to Cabinet.

Yesterday, The Tribune spoke to several officials who could not confirm the status of the proposal, and whether it has been presented; however, those officials noted the idea was not an unfamiliar one.

“I believe that as women, we should have a voice to speak to the issues that we face in the country,” said Mrs. Minnis said at the luncheon on Monday.

“For that reason, I am pushing for this office, which I believe will help us to push for certain things relating to women and children, such as healthcare, the well-being of women and children and other issues.”

The Bahamas Branch of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) sponsored the luncheon for the spouses of parliamentarians, department heads and senior female government officials at Luciano’s of Chicago. 

The event was held under the theme, “Strong Women, Leaders Unite,” according to a release by Bahamas Information Services. 

French President Emmanuel Macron came under heavy criticism earlier this year after he proposed his wife be given an official role as First Lady.

In August, nearly 300,000 signed a petition against the proposal, which would have given Brigitte Macron her own budget, salary and direct influence on policy.

Due to intense pushback to the move, which would have required a constitutional amendment, Mrs Macron was instead given a clear official role - a first for the country.

According to media reports, the French president’s wife will not draw a salary and only expenses incurred by her official duties will be covered.

In a “transparency charter,” it was outlined that Mrs Macron’s official role would focus on working with charities helping children and handicapped people. 

According to The Telegraph, she will also “work with the partners of other global leaders to highlight work to combat climate change or domestic violence.”

In the United States, there is no official designation of how the spouse of the president should fulfil her role. However, former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was the first spouse of the president to take an office in the West Wing of the White House and was later appointed head of a healthcare reform taskforce.

Comments

Sickened 1 year ago

So, if a lady becomes PM then her husband gets an office, but will he also have to use the position "to push for certain things relating to women and children, such as healthcare, the well-being of women and children", or can he focus on 'men' issues?

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Sickened 1 year ago

And yes, my comment is as stupid as Mrs. Minnis' request.

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licks2 1 year ago

No. . .but you can say that you are being political and backwards! Check your history. . .tat request is a given in the developed nations of the world. . .check the story of the Tuskegee Airman. . .Eleanor Roosevelt lobbied fro the rights of blacks. . .Lady Obama for children's health. . on and on around the globe! So stop ACTING stupid and naive. . .grow the hell up and contribute to the growth of your nation rather than being a political NUMB SKULL!

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UserOne 1 year ago

Well said licks2. It seems like we don't like to see other Bahamians getting positions. She wants to work for the good of her country and people pulling her down. SMH.

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Sickened 1 year ago

Isn't an 'office' a given once your spouse becomes leader. You don't need to sit in a room at the office of the prime minister to get stuff done. You just need to get off your ass and do stuff. She just needs to start speaking at various presentations and seminars. If she wants to speak at Zonta then she needs to approach Zonta.

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DWW 12 months ago

She doesn't need a budget expense account from a cash strapped nation to agitate for change. just saying.

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BahamasForBahamians 1 year ago

This wont bode well.

An office is is not a requirement to advance issues related to women in this country.

Essentially it creates additions to the payroll that we wont be able to determine if we're getting value for money on.

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jackbnimble 1 year ago

So if you're quiet like a church mouse like Ingraham's wife or missing in action like Christie's wife, how will this this role fit you? She just happens to be a little more vocal that her predecessors.

It ain't that serious. I say if you want to affect change, run for a seat and go to Parliament and speak up like all the other women there. Standing by a PM's side does not give you any entitlement, just ask "Gucci Grace".

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The_Oracle 1 year ago

What the hell is wrong with just doing good for the country as an individual? Damn they like their pomp and pageantry with budgets and attendants ! Whatever happened to selfless service? What happens when your successor isn't as philanthropic or well meaning? Must every precedent we set be the wrong one?

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ohdrap4 1 year ago

How about an OFFICE OF THE DOG ? That will get the dog or cat on the payroll as an animals rights consultant.

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licks2 1 year ago

What a dumb set of one-horse-town thinking people my people are? Political hacks to their very core. . . Listen to the dumb statement made by the oracle: "must every precedent we set be the wrong one"? Well-mudder-take-sick. . .I can't believe the amount of non-thinking nonsense I see around here. . .my my my my. . .this nation needs so much help. . .if these "conch fer breen" persons are the best and brightest. . .we got a long time in this dark place. . .provincial stupor gone to bed! And that other person but "office of the dog". . . lol! Yinna grow the hell up and act like yinna have some dang sense!! We have a national development to discuss. . .carry yall political tails where-ever yinna does go to talk yinna "color" thinking nonsense. . .leave the nation building to those who will act like they have sense and can reason beyond their party!!

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CatIslandBoy 1 year ago

Are the majority of you just plain ignorant, or only pretend to be? Sometimes, when reading some of your posts, I can only hang my head in shame. With backwards thinking like many of you, this country will be forever stuck in the 19th. Century mire in which it currently finds itself. In most emerging countries, the spouse of the Country's elected leader can play a highly visible role in bringing focus to many important causes. A very good idea, that our country so badly needs.

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Sickened 1 year ago

She can do that by getting out there and speaking. Sitting in an office won't help her causes in anyway. And... why would a 'strong' woman ask permission to speak. You like to see woman asking for approval huh?

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politicalpirate242 1 year ago

One ting is fa sure...they all wana follow in the US footstep. Office for spouse aka first lady...we might as well give up independence and join as the 51st state since we wan have first lady and president

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

The PM's wife has a very important role to play ......... and as she will inherit his pension when he dies, she might as well work along with him to promote worthy causes ....... And Mrs. Minnis is already complementing her PM husband well ......... Office of the PM Wife (Bahamas Office of the PM Spouse ......... BOPS)

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Well_mudda_take_sic 1 year ago

We, the people, elected only the one Minnis who ran for office. If his spouse is not content and honoured to bask in the glory of her husband's political success, then she should run for elected office in a constituency of her choosing (perhaps Killarney) rather than try get into active politics through some kind of special backdoor that she wants to create for herself. Will she eventually be seeking to attend cabinet meetings? Is she afraid her husband's political success will wane if she is not seated right next to him with her own grand political office in order to counsel him on all things political and protect him from his political enemies?

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bogart 1 year ago

Mrs. Minnis has been photographed at the side of the PM in many more events than l can recall than other spouses. If she wants to advance her country noone should hold her back, as a matter of fact it is expected so might as well come out and do it. Climate change is an area that needs championing, given present events Immigration and National Security, Education, Agriculture, etc. .

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Required 1 year ago

If she wants an office... she should run in an election.

Though in the photo she is already practicing her Grace Mugabe stare.

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

Boy, yall Bahamians cold ............ You complain about Dame Maggie (The Queen), Mrs. Ingraham (The Principal), Mrs. Christie (Fake Boobs Diva) ....... now yall complaining about Mrs. Minnis - who is NO Gucci Grace.

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The_Oracle 1 year ago

We aren't getting anywhere near National development, cause we can't handle the truth about ourselves first and foremost. It ain't pretty. Start that conversation, until then all of this is opinion, which I believe we all still have a right to?

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John2 1 year ago

She is not an elected official. Let her go and work with the Red cross or the aids secretariat. She can fight and "push for those issues relating to women and children, from those offices which already exist.and at the same time take part in fund raising. Balance the national Budget then this may be considered..

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hrysippus 1 year ago

AS the wife of the PM is unelected,.. ....................... Her wish to be a leader should be neglected., ................. This Commonwealth is a democracy,, ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, ,,, Most definitely not a "wifeocracy". ................... ................. She does not deserve a free ride to power,. .................... Based solely on a convenient dower.. ... ........ If she wants to be the Women's leader, ............. ................ Persuade the voters that we need her....... .................. ..

In a free and fair election.

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OldFort2012 1 year ago

Every woman knows what she can threaten her husband with if he does not do as she wants. What does she want an office for?

She has the bedroom!

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

Typical misogynistic comment .......... regardless of race, creed or nationality, men believe that women are always seeking to control them with their sexuality .......... But men use their sexuality everyday to control women!!!!! We must see the worth of the Spouse of the PM beyond her sexuality.

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OldFort2012 1 year ago

It's not misogynistic in the slightest to suggest that a wife has many ways to make a husband do her bidding. Happens to me all the time.

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ohdrap4 1 year ago

and the kitchen too, she has the kitchen.

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

........ and the washroom/laundry ........ she cleans his shirts and suits

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Gotoutintime 1 year ago

What will happen if Freddy gets to be PM??

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OldFort2012 1 year ago

He will have the Rear Office.

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Islangal1 1 year ago

I had shared this to my profile but deleted it AFTER reading some of the embarrassing comments. Holding an office doesn't mean physically sitting in an office it's a metaphor, as such it will allow her to advocate women rights and or charitable organizations in The Bahamas, it will be her husband's executive office. Which means she can act on behalf of those organization abroad she can seek collaboration, funding, recognition for Organizations in The Bahamas. She doesn't need to be elected as she's already pulled into the post by the Prime Minister.

I Believe such an office will force future wives to do more than just sit pretty and spend money. Bahamians educate yourselves, please. The majority of spouses of World Leaders holds an office.

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OldFort2012 1 year ago

"Bahamians educate yourselves, please. The majority of spouses of World Leaders holds an office."

I have educated myself. I know the difference between "majority" and 1.

UK: No Canada: No Russia: No China: No Germany: No Italy: No Switzerland: No Latin America: No

In fact, the only place of any import that does have a staffed office at public expense for a "spouse" is the USA. If you are trying to compare the position of the wife of a President of the only superpower on earth with the wife of a PM of 300,000 islanders....well, that is just ridiculous.

I am not trying to get into an argument, I am just stating facts.

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DDK 1 year ago

'the ONLY super power on earth'?

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ohdrap4 1 year ago

he forgot north korea.

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TalRussell 1 year ago

Comrades! If First Lady Patricia the wife a a multi-millionaire PM is prepared undergo a 'means test,' then perhaps the people's public purse will foot the bill her own office. car and policeman's driver, meals, travels and of course she will need hire staff and security travel her.
This is the wife the same PM, who says constituents must continue shi# out in they's backyards until at least the year 2025..... And the collection dead bodies from PMH morgue - is going setback the pocketbooks family members $100 to $700, starting in 60 days. {Why make this up?}.

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Reality_Check 1 year ago

Geeezzzz.......her head mussey swell real big since May of this year.

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jackbnimble 1 year ago

This is what happens when you have only ONE woman in the cabinet - and by all accounts an ineffective one. She must sense the shortfall and trying to make up for it. We've had Janet Bostwick, Glennys Hanna-Martin, and Sandra Dean-Patterson (just to name a few) all speak up for women's rights. With or without an office it clearly can be done. Sweet girl just needs to take her head out of sand and encourage her husband to balance his cabinet. Clearly more women are needed at the highest levels in government.

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

Excellent point ........... the glass ceiling of Bahamian female politicians is clearly evident.

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BONEFISH 1 year ago

Mrs. Minnis does not need an office to affect change or volunteer for various social programs. Nothing is stopping her presently from doing this.This comes about when you have persons, who don't know how, our Westminister system of government works and want to implement the American Federal Republican system, Denis Thatcher, Norma Major and Cherie Booth did not have an official office when their spouses served as prime ministers of the United Kingdom.

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

She automatically has a national platform as the PM's spouse ...... She does not need a formal First Lady Office ......... This makes her look like a Jezebel.

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banker 1 year ago

Simply ... we can't afford it.

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

The PM salary is roughly $125,000 with perks ....... if he serves 7 years, he retires with full pension ....... when he dies, his widow gets the same ..... we already have to probably pay her, so let her work for it right now.

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TalRussell 1 year ago

Comrades! Curiously got's me thinking if there could be actual communication trails follow where the then leader of the official opposition's wife had requested for the red shirts party to officenize her position as wife the Queen's official opposition?
To think all Maurgurite did for free for her country of islands... and once her husband was out office and Papa Hubert had dispatched the tow truck hitch his government car...the poor woman hads begs rides just go grocery shopping.

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pablojay 1 year ago

Hey guys, help me with this one, what if Fred Mitchell became prime minister?

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TalRussell 1 year ago

Comrades! Here's a little known salary fact you need know. The spouse of the prime minister Canada has no title at all — and is called, for all intents and purposes, the "spouse" of the prime minister of Canada. But wit there's more. Our islands country with but citizenry 98,445 warm bodies, currently pays our PM about what Canada's Prime Minister earns in salary with a citizenry ranging 25.78 million.

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banker 1 year ago

Canada has a population of over 36 million people. And by the way, last year those 36.29 million people committed 611 murders. If we had the same murder rate, we would have 6 murders per year.

Tal, you simply can't be trusted with numbers. Why bother making them up when they can be proven wrong so easily? Google is your friend, my dear.

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TalRussell 1 year ago

Comrade Banker, George Orwell was lucid to watch out for Google and Amazon. In a couple weeks Amazon will be announcing they will be kick starting where the US Postal Service left off in 1915 - when babies were officially mailed and successfully delivered between 1914 and 1915. Comrade Banker, lets pray the red shirts cabinet with the baby doctor in charge never attempts generate BABY MAIL Revenue.... ya baby will be a grown boy or girl's teenager by the time your parcel be ready for pickup at the post office.

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

DOES MRS. MINNIS HAVE A PROFESSIONAL CAREER????? ....... OR WAS SHE A HOUSEWIFE?????? .......... OR AN ASSETS MANAGER FOR HAM??????

JUST CURIOUS

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TalRussell 1 year ago

Comrade Sheeprunner12, the PM and 'Acee,' done be's everywhere including the Sunday mornings pulpits preaching the message of the Imperial prime minister's office and red shirts cabinet.
Let's not make this about questioning the abilities of the PM's spouse. The PM should never have allowed his spouse face the public's ridiculing her for what they perceived as pretentious proposal for cabinet's consideration of having her own - spouse of the PM office and staff.

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sheeprunner12 1 year ago

The cat is out of the bag ........ let them deal with it. Answer my question.

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jackbnimble 1 year ago

I understand she has some muck position in the Ministry of Agriculture.

If you ever need to import plants, you need to go see her.

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TalRussell 1 year ago

Comrades, could it be the Imperial prime minister is positioning to move on up to take residence in the big pink house atop Mount Fitzwilliam? Her Excellence Marguerite might soon be served eviction notice. Her Excellency will need a car cause the last red shirts prime minister sent the tow truck to repossess her husband's government issued little Russian Lada import. The poor lady was forced be bumming rides go Super Value for her grocery shopping.....But that could arise a problem considering Her Excellency had Minnis's leader official opposition car repossessed to give to Loretta. {Why make this up?}

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banker 1 year ago

It's too late for the pink house. Mrs. Swindling already dirtied up the place. It needs a fumigator to get rid of the current vermin occupying it.

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TalRussell 1 year ago

Comrade Banker, comments like that there would be no cries outrage coming from spectators along Bank Lane if you were being dragged along in leg iron shackles as you makes your way to the Judge to answer to treason charges. Calls for a minimum imprisonment of Fifty (50) years hard-labour for a former Comrade Banker, once respected for his informative posts. What in hell suddenly gone so wrong up in your Sandilands head? Lock Comrade Banker up, lock Comrade Banker up.

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killemwitdakno 12 months ago

Every wife following her isn't going to want the obligation of being involved. She can be engaged without a office. If Lady pindling and the social services cabinet minister have things to do , she should do whatever her platform is as well.

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