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Pm To Open Family Island Offices For Monthly Visits

Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis.

Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis.

BY DENISE MAYCOCK

Tribune Freeport Reporter

dmaycock@tribunemedia.net

PRIME Minister Dr Hubert Minnis plans to open temporary offices in other Family Islands, including Exuma, Eleuthera, and Central Andros to begin monthly visits there.

Dr Minnis, who was in Grand Bahama on Friday for his monthly visit, pledged to become “intimately involved” in those island communities as well.

In addition to meeting with a number of businesses and potential investment partners in Freeport, the Prime Minister also went to Port Lucaya Marketplace to show his support for Grand Bahama.

“I hope that others will show just as much interest as I do in GB because GB cannot grow only through the confines of Grand Bahamians; its all one Bahamas,” he said.

During a media briefing at the OPM in Freeport, The Prime Minister said he held a “productive meeting” with the Grand Bahama Port Authority and met with the principals of the Bahamas Paradise Cruise, the operators of Grand Celebration Cruise ship.

He noted that they are in discussions with Bahamas Celebration on the possibility of a second ship which is expected to begin service on April 1, in addition to the resumption of cruise ferry service in December by the Grand Celebration, which has ceased cruises to the island.

“We understand the circumstances of the Bahamas Celebration assisting the US government in hurricane relief efforts. It was a priority under the circumstances,” explained Dr Minnis.

He also announced that a honey production business is set to come on stream on October 26, as part of the launch of the first in a series of the government’s Entrepreneurship Programme. The Apiary he said guarantees 30 young people the opportunity to start their own business.

Dr Minnis indicated that his government is committed to working with the GBPA to eliminate all roadblocks to investment.

“We are dedicated to streamlining our investment process with the first step being the creation of an Investment Unit in Grand Bahama,” he said.

He noted that the government expects to review its Immigration, Customs, and Exchange Control policies with a view to…making it easier to invest and do business in Grand Bahama.

On the matter of Grand Lucayan Resort, the prime minister did not provide anything new concerning the sale of the property.

However, he assured Grand Bahamians that his government is focused on the redevelopment of the “Our Strip”.

“We recognize the urgency of this matter and my colleagues, and I are working diligently to complete the best deal. Grand Bahama requires more than just the reopening of the hotel strip. We must revive our entire tourism product,” he said.

Dr Minnis further said: “Our discussion with the owner and potential partners are with a view to transforming the property into the first step of an innovative and unique destination for Grand Bahama.”

He added that government is committed to ensuring that the existing jobs on the strip remain.

“We will continue our aggressive discussions until we can unveil our plan for a new Tourism product and a new destination.

“We remain committed and on track to conclude discussions with potential partners, and we are working towards this end,” he stated.

The prime minister also indicated that plans are also moving forward for the creation of a Grand Bahama Investment Promotion Board, which will be responsible for marketing Grand Bahama as a destination ready to do business.

“This Board will send the message to the world,” he said.

Comments

Well_mudda_take_sic 3 weeks, 2 days ago

PRIME Minister Dr Hubert Minnis plans to open temporary offices in other Family Islands, including Exuma, Eleuthera, and Central Andros to begin monthly visits there.

This is code for growing the size of government rather than creating private sector jobs. Minnis should be asked: How many people will be added to the public sector (government) payroll and at what annual cost? Also: What will be the expected total annual rental cost of these new 'temporary' offices?

In this day and age of advanced communications capabilities over the internet using handheld smart devices, do we really need such costly 'temporary' offices? Will someone please remind Minnis that we desperately need to shrink the size of our bloated government; not increase it!

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DDK 3 weeks, 2 days ago

Surely the P.M. can "borrow" the offices of the Island Administrators for his visits.

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks, 2 days ago

BUT ............. Doesn't the FI Administrator represent Central Government????? ....... Why does the PM need an alternative Office?????? ........ Don't we have too much government spending now on extras?????? ................ OR is this another political gimmick??????

SUGGESTION: This is a good time for the PM to come and sit with the Local Government teams and share ideas and Offices with them and build that organ that is right now in need for serious reform and strengthening - and more financial autonomy to get things done on the ground.

And hold meetings with Department Heads and civil servants who will give suggestions on how the Government can really optimize its work in the FI communities ..... that is what the PM should be doing to promote public service transparency and accountability.

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DDK 3 weeks, 2 days ago

........or he could read The Tribune posts!!!!!

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks, 2 days ago

Good point ............ has anyone told the PM Press Secretary to read the Tribune posts and comments as part of preparing for his daily briefings???

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baldbeardedbahamian 3 weeks, 2 days ago

If he wants a holiday break every month why not just take one?

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks, 2 days ago

Do not downplay how important FamiIy Island affairs are ...... There was once a Ministry of Out Island Affairs ....... Most modern countries still have a Ministry of the Interior that focuses on rural districts/counties etc. ...... but who cares about the Family Islands anymore??????

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TalRussell 3 weeks, 2 days ago

Comrades! Forget about the prime minister franchising the PMO out to the Out Islands. Were you like me, totally unaware that the Royal Bahamaland Policeman's Force (RBPF) - actually has an 'active military' (soldiers) policeman's section?

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birdiestrachan 3 weeks, 2 days ago

The man is having a great time, enjoying his life. He makes promises do not fill full them, moves on and make some more promises. The hotel repairs due to start NEXT month is no more now the concentration is on BEES.

The big life week ends in resorts food wine and drinks.

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks, 2 days ago

If Perry had put in 30% of the effort that Minnis has already shown that he can+...... we may have forgiven him by now

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BahamasForBahamians 3 weeks ago

If Perry had done half of what Minnis has done so far, he would've been a half assed Minister of tours. Nothing more.

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proudloudandfnm 3 weeks, 2 days ago

So no plan yet? Just another visit to the most depressed island in the country to party?

You told us construction on the hotels would start soon.

You told us you would do something to ensure Port Lucaya survives.

You told us a lot of things but you have not done a damned thing yet.

Whay is the damned plan for GB?!?!?!?

Enouugh of the stupid, nonsensical, PLP type press conferences.

DO SOMETHING!!!!

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks, 2 days ago

People in GB bray too damn much ....... ungrateful, lazy, entitled, americanized fools who live in a bubble world of what the real Bahamas is all about

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FreeportFreddy 3 weeks ago

You really are a Bahamian patriot there! VERY ignorant comments!

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks, 2 days ago

We have conveniently forgotten the "Non-Disclosure List" that was the first FNM raving investigation .......... Still no final word on what happened to the list

We have been taken down the road of those PLP Cabinet Ministers who were somehow involved in fishy transactions with the Ash fella ........... Can we hold our breath that those cases will ever end?????

Then came the civil service HR audit ...... looking for "ghost workers" ...... HMMMMMMM

Now we are on the next rave ............ Public Utilities No-Pay List ........ smoke and mirrors???

When will we see real work taking place??????? The Budget is cut ....... Talk of income tax ..................... Evacuations .......... Patience is beginning to wear thin

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proudloudandfnm 3 weeks, 1 day ago

Sheeprunner you as dumb as Birdie...

Get your head our of your ass...

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks, 1 day ago

You are a Grand Bahamian ......... see my comments above ....... case closed

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FreeportFreddy 3 weeks ago

see my comments above ... sheepf*%#er

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sheeprunner12 3 weeks ago

Freeport for the first 3 decades scoffed at the rest of the country as backward and undeveloped ........ now that they are on hard times, they whine and expect the (Nassau) government to take care of them because their white overlords have jumped ship with all the money ..... Now we fellow Out Islanders share your pain (sort of) but there is a pecking order that should start with the southern islands that are quickly becoming depopulated because SLOP never saw the need to develop them - at all!!!!!! ......... All Freeport needs is a few good investors to replace Hayward & St.George .......... The South never had major investors (except Inagua) ....... Now if you Freeporters have a problem with that comment - I do not apologize.

Many Sheeprunners are assisting with keeping Freeport alive today - including the DPM.

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