EDITOR, The Tribune.
THE 53rd national convention of the Progressive Liberal Party has now come to a close with the election of the Hon. Philip ‘Brave’ Davis, QC, MP (Cat Island, Rum Cay & San Salvador) as de facto and de jure leader of that entity. Others elected were the Hon. I. Chester Cooper (PLP-Exuma) as Deputy Leader; the Hon. Senator Fred Mitchell as National Chairman. Several other posts were filled, inclusive of the Treasurer’S position which was secured by my good friend and fellow Bahamian, Paul Bevans.
The huge margin of victory secured by Brave as contrasted to the handful of votes ascribed to Mrs. Hanna-Martin is indicative of the massive admiration; love and respect which most PLPs and even some ordinary Bahamians hold towards him. Brave is not a natural speaker nor is he charismatic in the manner of a Christie or Pindling. What he is is a hard working; focused and believable leader. Whether or not these traits will propel him into the Office of the Prime Minister will soon be tested.
I am a life long supporter of the PLP but the latter two years of the Christie Administration 2.0 were a political and economic disaster of the highest order for most Bahamians and a ton of party supporters. Christie, et al, led us straight down the proverbial garden path with absolutely no shame.
There was a lot of greed demonstrated and far too much arrogance.
It was refreshing to see and hear Mrs. Monique Pindling, the younger daughter of the late Sir Lynden Oscar Pindling and our erstwhile Governor General, Dame Marguerite Pindling, offer up a profound and telling “indictment” on the PLP of recent years.
The Hon. Philip “Brave” Davis has now achieved step two in a three step process. The first step, of course, would have been his election to the House of Assembly a decade or more ago.
Step two has now been accomplished in his successful election as party leader. Step three now lies before him. Is he capable of rising to the occasion?
The FNM came to office on the 10th May, 2017 and secured a huge electoral victory which translated into 35 seats in the House of Assembly.
The cabinet is huge and there are Ministers of State and Chairman/woman all over the place, after all the PM was obliged to find jobs for his crew members.
The honeymoon, such as it was, is now over. Some say that Bahamians are “too impatient” but I beg to differ with this patently bogus accusation.
Most of us are no longer a part of the so-called millennial generation and most of us have little time, if any, to waste.
Traditionally, the established news media, like The Nassau Guardian and The Tribune, have always supported the FNM.
It seems as if that party, even while in opposition, received the lion’s share of positive press, even if some of it would have been fake. It is, therefore, not to be expected by THE NEW PLP, going forward, to receive good and real coverage by the fake media.
Immediately, Brave and his team must flesh out a realistic and workable manifesto; contract with the people or covenant. Call it whatever you’d like but the average Bahamian deserves a viable alternative to the PLP.
The unceremonious, but expected, departure of Branville McCartney from the DNA signaled the death blow of that entity. In my view, there is a stark void of credible leadership with gravitas.......harsh but true.
And so, the NEW PLP has embarked on a political pilgrimage that could result in electoral victory in 2022. The NEW PLP has several things going for it. The FNM came to office unexpectedly and was totally unprepared to commence governing from day one.
The leadership of that party, as epitomized by Dr. Minnis, is not spontaneous and cannot speak off the cuff. Witness the bold and ill thought out statement by Minnis a few weeks ago relative to a deadline for illegals to leave The Bahamas. He might not have been deliberately referring to illegal Haitians but that is how it came across in the ‘fake’ media.
The Haitian communities in Abaco and New Providence, immediately raised hell and reminded the PM and the FNM that “five years was not a long time!” Upon hearing this political ‘threat’ Minnis and Minister Frankie Campbell, of self admitted partial Haitian parentage, ran/drove down to the Metropolitan Church on East Street, on a Sunday, to assure the Haitian pastor and congregation that they and others were safe and would be regularized in short order. Brent Symonette, if he was in sight, has stated that “it is the Christian” thing to do!
Dr. Duane Sands, a good and compassionate man, has his work cut out for him as Minister of Health.
The PMH and The Rand are falling apart as you read this.
Yes, the former PLP administration has to carry most of the blame for this state of affairs but both Sands and his putative leader are medical doctors who are used to using those facilities. Six months later, things have gotten worst.
With five members of parliament from Grand Bahama and the smartest Tourism Minister in the history of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas (Hon. Dionisio D’Aguilar) one would have hoped for Our Lucayan to be opened “for this winter season”.
The Bazaar in Freeport remains an eyesore of no mean proportions.
Crime continues unabated and it is now clear that no administration and no single politician or any other single Bahamian, standing alone, has the solutions, even though they are as big as Godzilla and King Kong combined.
Unemployment is still a vexing issue, despite the gradual opening of Baha Mar. Our brain drain will continue for now and into the future.
Yes, the pilgrimage for Brave and the NEW PLP has begun. Will it lead to more of the same or will it usher in, at last, heaven on earth? To God then, in all things, be the glory.
ORTLAND H. BODIE, JR.
October 26, 2017,