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Mcalpine: 'Agenda' Behind Negative Feedback On Dominica Stance

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PINERIDGE MP Rev Frederick McAlpine.

By NICO SCAVELLA

Tribune Staff Reporter

nscavella@tribunemedia.net

PINERIDGE MP Rev Fredrick McAlpine yesterday suggested that negative feedback directed at him for his critical stance on the government's proposed aid for Dominica, was due to "another agenda at play".

Mr McAlpine, in a recent interview with Our News, questioned whether the flack he has received for the comments he made during his contribution in the House of Assembly last month was personal in nature, and whether negative feedback existed "not because of my message but who the messenger is."

He further claimed that there are "persons in the press" pushing the narrative that he is against assisting the Dominicans, and conversely that his recommendations to aid Dominica in other tangible ways are "not being heard by some persons in the media."

Nonetheless, Mr McAlpine maintained his original position regarding the assistance of Dominicans, adding: "I can't be anti-Christian simply because I'm saying listen, we can help those folks, but at the same time don't negate or neglect us as well."

Late last month, Mr McAlpine recommended that instead of giving Dominicans a safe haven in the Bahamas, wealthy Cabinet ministers should instead take money from their own pockets to contribute to that island's restoration efforts.

Mr McAlpine said he felt that the Bahamas could assist Dominica financially, and should consider giving $200,000 to Dominica. That country donated $100,000 to the Bahamas after Hurricane Matthew last year.

And, in what appeared to be a swipe at Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis, who cried earlier in the day as he recounted the destruction in Dominica, Mr McAlpine said he was crying for his own people.

Mr McAlpine's remarks sparked widespread criticism, as well as questions about whether he is xenophobic or racist.

In a recent interview with Our News, however, Mr McAlpine stood by his initial remarks, although stressing that "never once did I say not to assist the people (of Dominica)."

"…Sometimes I'm beginning to wonder if this argument is coming from persons not because of my message but who the messenger is," he said. "If I'm saying we can help the people of Dominica and then there are persons in the press trying to push to the country as if I never said to help them, then I begin to think there's another agenda at play."

When asked what he thinks that "agenda" is, Mr McAlpine responded by saying: "I don't know, you tell me. The fact of the matter is I'm saying that we ought to help them, we should give them finances, we should send aid, we should send people to help build their country, but it's like that's not being heard by some persons in the media. Now, of course, there are those who are hearing me loud and clearly."

He added: "My view remains the same: assisting Dominica is fine, but also assist the Bahamian people."

Earlier this week, Press Secretary Anthony "Ace" Newbold said Prime Minister Minnis was not offended by Mr McAlpine's remarks, and suggested that Prime Minister Minnis has no plans to address Mr McAlpine about his comments.

Still, some Free National Movement observers felt that Mr McAlpine's comments stemmed from his bitterness over not being offered a Cabinet position.

Mr McAlpine has admitted that he would have liked to have been given a Cabinet post.

However, Mr McAlpine insisted that he has since got over not being offered a Cabinet position.

"Like anybody else who perhaps did not get into the Cabinet would've been disappointed, I was disappointed when I was not chosen for a Cabinet position," he told reporters. "This is my second non-consecutive time in Parliament. I served for five years in the Senate, so I know how the procedure (works). So was I disappointed? Yes. But today, I see it as a blessing in disguise.

"So I'm being on the outside, listen, I'm quite comfortable fighting for Pineridge and the people of Grand Bahama and Bahamian people at large. I have no problems with that. Now that's the reality and that's the truth. Now am I anti-my prime minister or the FNM? No. We are a democratic society. I am a backbencher. That's what backbenchers do all over the world in Westminster systems. They speak for their people.

"I have not sworn allegiance to her majesty and her servants, I have sworn allegiance to the people of the Bahamas. So they have, based on the Constitution, they have parameters that they have to stay in. I don't have to stay in those parameters. I am in a position to fight for the people of Pineridge and the people of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas and to express my view."

Comments

sheeprunner12 2 years ago

Mac is on track to lead the Backbenchers Coalition ........ a very powerful lobby group

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ohdrap4 2 years ago

An agenda is like an arse. everybody has one.

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CatIslandBoy 2 years ago

This chap is really full of himself. Probably a one-term has been.

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Economist 2 years ago

This man is such an idiot.

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banker 2 years ago

Is that eye shadow that he is wearing? Strange picture.

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TalRussell 2 years ago

Comrades! The good Pineridge constituents, would've much more preferred if their Red Shirt MP had stoods up in the House to tell his red colleagues - that he, likes perhaps most Grand Bahamalanders instincts is if Grand Bahamalanders, don't like the lies we done told..... well, we Red Shirts have lots more?

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TheMadHatter 2 years ago

This is really a non-issue as we prepare on Monday to celebrate and perhaps find out which of our Bahamian heroes discovered the Bahamas in 1492.

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ohdrap4 2 years ago

the bahamas was discovered by the descendants of the West Indies in 1967.

wrong holiday.

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sheeprunner12 2 years ago

This is such a redundant and meaningless holiday ...... a fake day based on a lie from the very beginning ......... It should have been renamed Encounter Day and be a real selling point to bring Europe Africa and America together right here in The Bahamas ........ but we missed that ..... The January 10 holiday serves a more sensible purpose for celebrating Bahamian heroes from Gov. Woodes Rogers to Col. Andrew Deveaux to the likes of our civil Rights and Suffragettes and not just the PLPs

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banker 2 years ago

A more apt day would be Infection Day, or Invasion Day. The Europeans infected and diseased the Lucayans and Arawaks, just like the PLP infected and diseased the Bahamians. Personally, I would rather have an STD than be a PLP -- you can get a shot for an STD but PLP means stupidity for life.

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SP 2 years ago

PINERIDGE MP Rev Fredrick McAlpine...Please just STFU and go away!

1 John 3:17-18
17 But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? 18 Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.

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by SP

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The_Oracle 2 years ago

Another irrelevant political hack crying over spilt milk, didn't get what he wanted, can't make no money or shake the dilly tree.

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pablojay 2 years ago

I really did not want to respond to another article about McAlpine, but i must. When he criticized Prime Minister Minnis concerning his assistance to Dominica, it was his right to free speech, when he is criticized, those who did so" have an agenda".Therein lies his mindset,which was nurtured as a church leader, where he did all the talking, led all the singing and was in charge of everything. It was his show, where even the Lord played second fiddle to him.He has a mini church now because most of his members were able to see him for what he is, a megalomaniac. I am of the belief that he spoke out because it was killing him to have to listen to others speaking so much , while so little attention was being paid to him.

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sheeprunner12 2 years ago

Where is the Minnis Doctrine Agenda????? ......... Has Renward and the Speaker abandoned HAM on this??????? ........ Rent2OwnHousing, GBDevelopment, OvertheHillTaxZones and PublicAccountability ..... but we have gotten Witchhunts, SpyBill and TearsforDominica ............ SMT

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