By TANEKA THOMPSON
Tribune News Editor
TOURISM Minister Dionisio D’Aguilar tops the list of millionaire candidates who are vying for re-election with a total net worth of $37,951,803, according to financial disclosures submitted to the Parliamentary Registration Department.
Mr D’Aguilar, who lists himself as a business executive, has total assets of $36,828,828, an annual income of $1,467,988 and liabilities of $345,013. Among his assets, the West Bay Street resident lists more than $32m in securities/investments and nearly $3m in real estate.
The disclosures show that more than 55 millionaires are seeking public office. While many of them are in the Free National Movement and Progressive Liberal Party, some of the wealthy hopefuls are members of third parties as well.
The incumbent candidate with the second highest net worth is the Progressive Liberal Party’s Chester Cooper. The Exuma and Ragged Island incumbent is worth $14.8m with an income of $370,000. The bulk of the businessman’s assets is $11m in investments and $3m in real estate.
Other wealthy candidates include the two leaders of the FNM and the PLP. Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis, who is seeking a fourth term as the Killarney representative, has a net worth of $14,048,902, making him the wealthiest leader of a major political party. His net worth has steadily increased over the years: in 2017 he was worth $12.6m and $10.9m according to declarations he filed in 2012.
PLP leader Philip “Brave” Davis, Cat Island, Rum Cay and San Salvador incumbent, lists his net worth as $4,100,237. According to declarations Mr Davis filed in 2017, his net worth at the time was $4.3m.
Arinthia Komolafe, leader of the Democratic National Alliance, has assets worth more than $1m however her net worth falls short of the millionaires club at $640,900.
Perhaps the most eyebrow raising declaration comes from East Grand Bahama hopeful Kevin King, of the newly formed Kingdom Government Movement, who lists his net worth as $53,129,820—which would make him the wealthiest person on the list according to his disclosures. The physician and political newcomer says his assets include $35m in securities and $8m in real estate. However, his total income is listed as $38,500.
Other wealthy FNM candidates include: former Minister of Health Dr Duane Sands in Elizabeth with a net worth of $6,958,000; Garden Hills hopeful Stephen Greenslade with a net worth of $5,743,959; Golden Gates incumbent Michael Foulkes with a net worth of $1.2m; Long Island incumbent Adrian Gibson with a net worth of $1.2m; and Minister of Environment Romi Ferreira with a net worth of $1.6m. Minister of Agriculture Michael Pintard, Marco City incumbent, lists his net worth at $2.9m.
Minister of National Security Marvin Dames, who is hoping to win again in Mount Moriah, has a net worth of just over $2m while Minister of Education Jeff Lloyd, South Beach incumbent, has a net worth of $1,152,027.
Other wealthy PLP hopefuls include MICAL candidate Basil McIntosh with a net worth of $4,989,037; Tall Pines candidate Dr Michael Darville who lists his net worth as $4,665,000 and former Senator Keith Bell with a net worth of just over $1m. PLP Freetown hopeful Wayne Munroe, QC, is worth $2.7m. The PLP’s hopeful for Killarney Ronald Duncombe has a net worth of $1.6m while PLP Seabreeze candidate Leslia Miller-Brice is worth $3.1m.
Rollington Cooper, Jr, who is running in Central Grand Bahama, is another KGM member who lists himself as a multimillionaire with a net worth of $13.4m. According to the entrepreneur’s declaration, the bulk of these assets—$13.9m—are in real estate. His form lists his total income as only $500 however with $588,000 in liabilities.
Three candidates vying to represent Central and South Eleuthera are millionaires: Cassius Stuart, of the United Coalition, is worth $3.7m; PLP candidate Clay Sweeting is worth $1.5m and Alphonso Albury lists his worth at $1.9m.
The Centreville constituency has three millionaires vying for the seat: independent incumbent Reece Chipman with a net worth of $2.2m; contractor Arrie Percentie with a net worth of over $14m and businessman Frederick Sawyer who lists his net worth at $1.2m.
Not everyone running for office is a millionaire, however.
In West End and Bimini, FNM incumbent Pakesia Parker Edgecombe lists her net worth at $152,591.22. Minister of Works Desmond Bannister, the Carmichael incumbent, has a net worth of $292,980.
FNM Bain and Grants incumbent Town Travis Robinson has a net worth of $147,000 however his wealth has increased since he first ran for office in 2017. At the time, Mr Robinson, a student, had a net worth of $7,300.
Diedre Ann Taylor, a “missionary” who is running in Exuma and Ragged Island, lists assets of just over $3,000 with no net worth stated. Her income is listed at $400 per month.
In 2017, officials from the Parliamentary Registration Dept. and Public Disclosure Commission said they were not responsible for verifying the data put forward by candidates, insisting that responsibility lies with other government agencies.
The revelation came after one political newcomer in 2017—Bishop James Darling, of the Bahamas Constitution Party—listed his net worth as $48m. Bishop Darling, whose occupation was given as a “minister of religion”, listed the bulk of this figure as $40m from securities.
The full list of 2021 financial declarations is in today's Tribune.