MP for Bain and Grants Town Travis Robinson.
By RASHAD ROLLE
Tribune Staff Reporter
BAIN & Grants Town MP Travis Robinson wants to make a special address to Parliament at the start of the next House of Assembly sitting, but senior officials in the Free National Movement have no idea what he will say.
Of the four FNM MPs who voted against an increase in value added tax to 12 percent this week, he is the only one requesting consideration to make a special communication.
One source in the party has told The Tribune Mr Robinson is expected to announce his intention to become an independent parliamentarian, though this has been shot down by others in the FNM.
Asked yesterday if he is going independent, Mr Robinson said “no comment.”
The 23-year-old had planned to run in Bain & Grants Town as an independent candidate before joining the FNM’s ticket in late 2016.
“I have no idea what he will say,” FNM Chairman Carl Culmer told The Tribune yesterday. “I’m not worried. I think Travis is a good gentlemen and I think he will do the right thing. I think he supports the party and I think it will stay that way.”
Yesterday, House Speaker Halson Moultrie said he has not received Mr Robinson’s letter.
Asked about this, Mr Robinson told The Tribune he signed off on the letter and, though he sent for it to be delivered by a staff member, “the letter never made it.”
“(Mr Moultrie) will be in possession of the letter by start of day Monday morning,” Mr Robinson said.
Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis fired him as parliamentary secretary in the Ministry of Tourism this week for voting against VAT’s increase, a breach of Westminster protocols. It was a stunning development for someone who symbolised the party’s youth outreach efforts on the campaign trail last year.
His VAT vote drew criticism from the FNM’s Bain and Grants Town Constituency Association and spurred anger throughout the party. Residents of the community, however, appear to overwhelmingly support his action, some telling The Tribune he is “for the people.”
Speaker Moultrie said he must be given at least a day’s notice of an MP’s request to make a special communication to Parliament. Mr Robinson’s letter must contain the “contents of what he will present,” he said, adding: “The contents will then be reviewed and if there isn’t anything inflammatory or controversial in it, it will be approved. If there is something controversial, recommendations will be made to him and once he complies with the recommendations there will be no difficulty allowing him to speak.”