PROGRESSIVE Liberal Party chairman Fred Mitchell said yesterday Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis should “hang his head in shame” as he pushed back against allegations from Dr Minnis that the opposition party is corrupt.
Mr Mitchell, pictured right, said while the PLP is not perfect, it is a “more perfect party” than the Free National Movement as he cited examples of what he sees as conflict of interest and corruption within the FNM.
“The headline in the press quotes the prime minister as saying that the PLP is the party of corruption,” Mr Mitchell noted.
“We wonder how this fellow does not bite his tongue. So far in recent political memory, there is one conviction on corruption and that person was an FNM member of the board of the then Bahamas Electricity Corporation, now Bahamas Power and Light.”
He was referring to the 2016 conviction of Fred Ramsey for bribery related charges stemming from the Alstom SA/Bahamas Electricity Corporation (BEC) scandal.
“Since this man Dr Minnis has come to office, we have had self dealing by his Minister of Immigration, patched up by using their majority in Parliament to say it is okay for the minister to give himself a contract for the Post Office in the Town Centre Mall. This is classic conflict of interest,” Mr Mitchell added.
“Who can forget the crooked Oban deal, with the prime minister sitting and watching a fake signing taking place for a fake deal which has so far produced nothing for Grand Bahama?
“Then there are the two ministers of the government who stand judicially condemned for the role they played in the [bribery and extortion trial of Frank Smith]. Dr Duane Sands and Marvin Dames must resign or be dismissed.
“... The PLP is not perfect but it is a ‘more perfect party’ than the FNM, having built this nation and its institutions from the ground up. The FNM has nothing to show but their idle and baseless attacks on our great party.”
On Sunday, while speaking at a church service recognising his administration’s two years in office, Dr Minnis painted the PLP as a corrupt group that believes it “owns” this country, as he urged members of the Free National Movement not to take the public’s support for granted.
“For a quarter century, the PLP ruled under a cult of personality, a sense of entitlement and mass corruption and widespread victimisation,” Dr Minnis said. “They kept rigid control of the broadcast media so they could spew their propaganda and limit our freedom of expression. Then, as now, they believe that the rule of law does not apply to them. They believe they can engage in corruption without consequences.
“The PLP believes it owns this country and they are entitled to steal and plunder with zeal. The FNM, we are different. We cherish the name ‘free’ because we are committed to the cause of expanding and protecting freedom in the nation. We are guided by the values of equality, the rule of law, social justice and opportunity for all.”