By RASHAD ROLLE
Tribune Staff Reporter
RICARDO Smith is gearing up to challenge Chester Cooper for deputy leader of the Progressive Liberal Party yet again.
Mr Smith received 69 votes when he ran in 2017. Mr Cooper, the Exuma and Ragged Island MP, received 1226 votes.
On Friday, Mr Smith said while he has not officially decided to challenge Mr Cooper, he is very likely to do so again. His attempt would be seen as a major long-shot to succeed.
“I think the Bahamian people in the last election had desperation because certainly the FNM didn’t offer a better team than the PLP,” he said. “People voting for the FNM was a desperate dash to break a cycle they believe was just no good for them. Here it is now the PLP has an opportunity to refocus its efforts on the principles of the organization which are to wipe tears from every eye and utilize people who could assist with this message. If we don’t look at all he talent available to us we may miss that opportunity. I believe we have a golden opportunity but we lost the inner city of New Providence and the only way you recapture the country is by reclaiming the centre and by reconnecting with people.”
Asked why he’s running for deputy leader, he said: “The leader should be someone who sits in Parliament. I don’t hold a seat in Parliament so the next best position and a position I think I’m eminently qualified to hold, far better than the present holder of the office, is deputy.
The PLP is scheduled to host its convention on July 25 and 26.
In 2017 Mr Smith made news when he was fired from the Bahamas Agricultural & Industrial Corporation for participating in the PLP’s convention. BAIC staff regulations prohibit employees from standing for elections as members of a party.