EDITOR, The Tribune
The abrupt termination of veteran journalist and host of The Conversation at ZNS, Shenique Miller, is being labelled political victimisation by Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) supporters. Rumour has it that Free National Movement (FNM) operatives at the Broadcasting Corporation of The Bahamas decided to pull the plug on The Conversation after Vice Chair of the PLP, Obie Roberts, appeared as a guest on the programme with Ms Miller, who is reportedly an FNM. Apparently, Miller committed the unpardonable sin by allowing Roberts to appear on her popular radio show. Allowing dissenting voices is good for democracy. But obviously someone wanted Miller and her panel of guests to all sing from the FNM hymn sheet.
The allegations of victimisation at the hands of FNM officials is hard for me to digest, as one who has voted for the party in each election cycle dating back to 1997. I was always taught that political victimisation was the inclusive trademark of the PLP. The FNM was founded by Sir Cecil Wallace-Whitfield and the other members of the Dissident Eight in 1970, due in large part to the rapid deterioration of democracy within the PLP government under the late Sir Lynden O Pindling. While the PLP was manifesting signs of being more an autocracy than a democratic political organisation, where dissenting voices and opinions are welcome, the FNM was founded on the ideals of democracy and free speech.
Hence, the initial name of the nascent political rival to the PLP was the Free-PLP. Terminating Miller is not only a move which will undermine the FNM’s moral authority in regards to how it treats dissenters, but it is also unFNM. Moving forward, the FNM can no longer point the finger at the PLP amid allegations of victimisation.
ZNS is a public funded corporation that heavily relies on subsidies provided by FNM and PLP taxpayers. As such, PLPs should not be deprived of access to ZNS, or any other public entity for that matter.
In June 2017 the newly installed Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis told ZNS and Bahamas Information Services employees that he didn’t care whether they were PLP or FNM, or even whether they had voted for him or not. Apparently, a rabid FNM operative in management forgot about Minnis’ no victimisation policy.
February 2, 2020.