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Davis Claims A 'Constitutional Crisis' Over Town Centre Mall

Town Centre Mall. Photo: Shawn Hanna/Tribune staff

Town Centre Mall. Photo: Shawn Hanna/Tribune staff

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PLP Leader Philip 'Brave' Davis.

By MORGAN ADDERLEY

Tribune Staff Reporter

madderley@tribunemedia.net

OPPOSITION Leader Philip "Brave" Davis said yesterday Friday's broken valve incident at the General Post Office illustrates the fact that renovations done to Town Centre Mall to accommodate the facility were not done in accordance with "acceptable international standards for postal services".

Mr Davis also contended the contradiction between the House of Assembly resolution regarding the lease of TCM for the post office and former Cabinet minister Brent Symonette's admission that Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis called him personally to negotiate the deal represents a "constitutional crisis".

On Friday, Transport Minister Renward Wells said operations at the General Post Office continued with minimal impact after a broken valve caused mail and employees to be showered with water.

Mr Davis referred to this incident as an "embarrassing debacle".

"Apparently that early morning call between the owner Brent Symonette, then a Cabinet minister and the prime minister and the subsequent dishonest House resolution led

to shoddy workmanship, negligence and short cuts which caused the incident," he said.

"Moreover, the incompetence of the FNM government has not only created an unsafe workplace, compromising the health, safety and wellbeing of scores of workers, but the controversial House resolution is likely to create a constitutional crisis, subject to a credible legal challenge."

When asked if the Official Opposition has any concerns about how the General Post Office will operate, Mr Davis said "certainly".

He said information coming to the party shows the renovations done to the facility to accommodate the post office were not done "in accordance with acceptable international standards for postal services."

He also said: "And that that may have happened because of the manner in which the works are being executed because of the incompetence and the rush to respond to the public outcry about them leasing the Town Centre Mall in the first place.

"And so we are concerned about the safety and security of workers at the Town Centre Mall. We've always been concerned about the structural integrity of the Town Centre Mall and we continue to be."

Last week, Dr Minnis welcomed the Official Opposition's pledge to move a no-confidence motion against him in the House of Assembly but sidestepped questions about the TCM lease.

He did not directly answer questions about Mr Symonette's claim that the pair discussed mall lease details before the parliamentary resolution permitting the lease was passed. Critics, including former Attorney General Alfred Sears, QC, believe Mr Symonette's revelation calls into question the legitimacy of the resolution.

Yesterday Mr Davis said, in accordance with Westminster conventions, after the "lies were exposed" the Minnis administration should have "immediately" stepped down or called an election.

"The House resolution meant to absolve Mr Symonette of any wrongdoing contradicted Mr Symonette's account of the process, effectively creating a constitutional crisis for the government," he said.

When asked to clarify these remarks, Mr Davis pointed to the Westminster system.

"There's a Westminster protocol and convention that particularly members of Cabinet ought not mislead - and that's one way, because you can mislead without lying in some way, you just fudge the truth or lie to parliament.

"Because once that is done, you're no longer honourable and you need to be stepping down.

". . .There's several missteps in this. And therefore the missteps are as such that we need to call an election and we want you to repose confidence back in us. It becomes a constitutional issue because they remain in office with this pall of immorality hanging over their head, having (misled) Parliament and to the Bahamian people."

Comments

moncurcool 1 month, 2 weeks ago

Why do newspapers continue to place a microphone in the front of this man to report the nonsense that comes out of his mouth. The audacity to talk about Westminster protocols, after all the garbage they did and never followed the protocols, The embarrassing debacle is that he talks democracy, but yet, threatens all the people in his party not to run. Time for these old tired politicians to get off the scene.

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TigerB 1 month, 2 weeks ago

I watch the newscast yesterday, he was almost smiling. happy to see the damage done and then, on the other hand, he said he was concern about the safety and security of the staff...sounds crazy to me. This guy always put a smile on my face

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thephoenix562 1 month, 1 week ago

So sad.Seriously.Constitutional crisis?

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proudloudandfnm 1 month, 1 week ago

Davis truly is a hypocrite. Or a full on moron. Or both...

We had a constitutional crisis for 5 years while he was DPM and he never once uttered a word. Coward....

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ABOMINATION 1 month, 1 week ago

The audacity of this man! Jesus take the wheel! Ask them about the JL building on Blake Road! The post office on East Hill, that saw staff working under the most dangerous conditions..for years and years! The Clarence A.Bain Building... ALL TOSE GOVT. BUILDINGS THAT WERE LEFT IN DEPLORABLE STATES, BECAUSE THEY WERE NOT MAINTAINED? Its just like the BPL crisis, this did not happen over night....its years and years of neglect, instead of maintaining the machines, they band aided it, and used the funds for their own good. Journalist of the Bahamas, please, please, why do you have this man of no repute always on your front page..shame..shame... do your investigative work, and come out with facts. Stop giving this man the time of day..he does not deserve it.

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Clamshell 1 month, 1 week ago

Philip “Gravy” Davis is just plssed off that the gravy boat passed him by on this deal.

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TalRussell 1 month, 1 week ago

Comrade "Brave:" 'do something" about $70 million Post Office. Aren't you the Queen's chief designated official opposition critic on all things Imperialists red shirts governing, yes, no .... Need help... grab hold one them pre Pindling, governing days political operations manuals - co-authored with Milo, Cecil and Mitch .... .has know if four man's..could brungs down all powerful Sir Stafford and Pop's Symonette's UBP - it gotta be worth a good read ....

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