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Smith Says Former Fnms Must Explain Plp Support

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George Smith

By KHRISNA VIRGIL

Deputy Chief Reporter

kvirgil@tribunemedia.net

THE Free National Movement turncoats, including two former Cabinet ministers, who publicly pledged support for Prime Minister Perry Christie must quickly prove the reasoning behind their move to avoid being branded “political parasites and opportunists,” former Cabinet minister George Smith said yesterday.

If the move is seen as them “singing for their supper” or gratitude for favourable treatment by the prime minister, then it will not be perceived as the group genuinely believing in the PLP’s principles or its leader’s ability to steer the country into the future, he told The Tribune.

On the final night of the PLP’s convention, as Mr Christie wrapped up his victory speech, former FNM Cabinet ministers Algernon Allen and Byron Woodside along with former party members Ivoine Ingraham, Lester Turnquest and Anthony Miller took to the stage to pledge their support for the nation’s leader, at one point describing him as “the greatest leader” that this country has ever seen.

Singling out Mr Allen from the group, Mr Smith said he hopes “Allen now realises that anyone who comes to the PLP does not have to swim through vomit or any such thing” to be welcomed by the party.

He told this newspaper yesterday that Mr Allen’s actions last week reminded him of the events following the 1992 general election in which the now Urban Renewal (UR) co-chair castigated Mr Christie “in the most vile way” for rejoining the PLP.

Mr Allen was named UR co-chair shortly after the PLP took office in 2012.

“(Former Prime Minister Hubert) Ingraham and Mr Christie were fired from Cabinet by (former Prime Minister) Lynden Pindling in 1985,” Mr Smith, a PLP stalwart councillor said. “Ingraham contested his seat in Abaco in 1987. Christie contested as an independent. They both won because there was very little effort put against them even though the PLP nominated candidates.

“After 1987 they were in the House for a little while then Mr Christie came back to the PLP and was made minister of trade and industry in 1989.

“So when the election of 1992 had occurred, Christie would have been back in the PLP (but) the FNM won the 1992 election. But when he came back to the PLP Algernon Allen who was then the member of Parliament for Marathon referred to Mr Christie in the most vile way and said that he swam through vomit. That’s what Allen said of Christie.”

He added: “Every Bahamian is welcome to identify with the Progressive Liberal Party. The only real consideration must be the belief that the PLP is the best political organisation to make the Bahamas the best country possible.

“We are happy when converts join us. We hope that they do not expect any special considerations or rewards. If those who identify with the party or its leader on Thursday evening are expecting or have received special treatment, then they may be viewed as opportunists or political parasites. I hope that Algernon Allen now realises that anyone who comes to the PLP does not have to swim in vomit or any such thing to get to the PLP.

“The PLP is a party open to all progressive thinking Bahamians who love their country and its people. I am sure if any of them have come to the PLP genuinely to believe in the PLP and its leader we would welcome them. But if it becomes known that they did it for some special consideration and or job appointment or something that isn’t readily available to any and every Bahamas, then those individuals could be regarded as political parasites.”

While PLPs celebrated the new pledge of allegiance for the prime minister by the group, many FNMs viewed it as weak and incapable of causing any real implications for the already fractured FNM.

Mr Allen, then minister of housing and social development, was fired from the post on August 28, 2001 after then Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham asked him to resign, but he refused. Earlier that month he had lost his leadership bid to replace Mr Ingraham as FNM leader.

In that year, former National Security Minister Tommy Turnquest and former Labour Minister Dion Foulkes were the leader designate and deputy leader designate respectively, elected in a specially convened leadership process. Mr Allen then alleged that this process was “corrupted”.

Despite this contentious relationship, the following year in 2002, he declared that he was “totally committed to the FNM.”

Mr Woodside served in the last Ingraham administration. In January 2016, the PLP announced that he had joined the party.

Comments

Well_mudda_take_sic 3 years, 5 months ago

Here's what one well-known Bahamian journalist had to say about George Smith's role in the history of the Bahamas as far back as 1982: ".....the Bahamas was in the throes of a criminal takeover by South American drug cartels. The Colombian flag was raised over Norman's Cay in George Smith's Exuma constituency by the notorious gangster Carlos Lehder, who drove ordinary visitors away at gunpoint and orchestrated hourly cocaine flights to the US. The 1984 Commission of Inquiry found that Smith had accepted gifts and hospitality from Lehder, who is now serving a long sentence in an American jail. In fact, one parliamentarian said at the time that 'Pindling and his crew make the Bay Street Boys look like schoolchildren.'" Corrupt George Smith is related to none other than Sir Snake's son-in-law Frank Smith, the incompetent idiot who Crooked Christie appointed as Chairman of our Public Hospital Authority (PHA). No doubt it is the greedy corrupt Sir Snake who is pushing Crooked Christie to let this corrupt scoundrel, George Smith, re-enter active politics. Many criminals are sitting in Fox Hill Prison today for having committed crimes that pale in comparison to the much more serious crimes that George Smith committed. And lying George would try con Crooked Christie and the good people of Exuma into believing he has since welcomed the Good Lord into his life and sought, found and received forgiveness and redemption for all of his earlier transgressions.....BUT ANYONE WHO KNOWS THIS LYING CROOKED SCOUNDREL KNOWS JUST HOW BAD A SCUMBAG HE TRULY IS!

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DDK 3 years, 5 months ago

You have a very good memory!

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banker 3 years, 5 months ago

George Smith doesn't like those people because these political parasites and opportunists are crowding out the PLP political parasites and opportunists. With so many singing for their supper, there een enough to go around. That's the real issue.

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realfreethinker 3 years, 5 months ago

You are quite correct. I saw a headline to day in the Freeport news about a plp insider crying fowl on p[erry for embracing these losers,and not having the decency to call any of the candidates to the stage. This is the sign of a desperate man,trying to cling to power. These rejects have no credibility left. They are just hoping for a handout

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alfalfa 3 years, 5 months ago

Once again the Tribune has opted to give press coverage to this political has been, who was proven to be the beneficiary of drug proceeds by a "Commission of Inquiry". He is now a political genius from whom we can benefit by his ramblings. Get real. You could be better served by listening to the political opinions of the man on the street. Stop printing his drivel.

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