Minnis staying on to lead FNM in opposition

Dr Hubert Minnis speaking to the press yesterday after voting.

Dr Hubert Minnis speaking to the press yesterday after voting.


Tribune Chief Reporter


AFTER repeatedly declaring that his party would be returned to office, Free National Movement leader Dr Hubert Minnis was forced to concede defeat and congratulate PLP leader Philip “Brave” Davis for his wide margin electoral victory.

Dr Minnis also said he would stay on as leader of the FNM in opposition.

While the ballot count continued to trickle in last night, Dr Minnis accepted his party’s loss to the Progressive Liberal Party, which had run a campaign that resonated with voters. 


EMPTY seats at the Free National Movement headquarters last night - void of supporters, candidates and ministers as results were tallied. Photos: Racardo Thomas/Tribune Staff

Before 9pm, the FNM leader contacted Mr Davis to offer his best wishes. Dr Minnis said both he and his party accepted the results of the snap general election, adding they were proud of the work done in the last four years.

His statement was preceded by widespread predictions that the FNM had lost the election to the PLP by a wide margin. An air of silence and disappointment cloaked the now opposition party’s headquarters on Mackey Street last night, evidenced by virtually no supporters gathered there.

 But over on Farrington Road and other portions of the island, PLPs were in celebratory mode over the fact that their leader— a man who has been in front line politics since 2002 and was once deputy prime minister under a previous PLP government — had now been elevated as leader of the country.

 Ultimately, Dr Minnis’ universal food programme for school children among other last minute campaign promises were not enough to clinch victory.


Dr Hubert Minnis arriving to cast his vote yesterday.

 “Tonight I spoke with leader of the Progressive Liberal Party Philip Davis and offered my congratulations to him and his party on their victory at the polls,” Dr Minnis, who retained his Killarney seat, said in a statement issued by the party.

 “I will lead the Free National Movement into the House as the leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition,” that statement continued. “The Bahamas has a proud democratic tradition. The people decide who serves as government.

 “Our party presented its vision for the future to Bahamians from the northern islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco, all the way to the southern islands of MICAL. The people determined that they preferred the Progressive Liberal Party. My party and I accept that result. We are proud of our record over the past four-plus years.”

 Dr Minnis said his party’s term in office was marked by immense challenges. Despite this, he said there were numerous accomplishments for the betterment of Bahamians.

 “During our term we faced the most difficult times in Bahamian history. In September 2019, Abaco, the Abaco Cays and Grand Bahama were struck by the strongest storm to hit The Bahamas. Hurricane Dorian was one of the strongest storms recorded on our planet. It caused generational destruction to our northern islands. Six months later, we were in the COVID-19 pandemic. Throughout each crisis my government worked hard to assist the Bahamian people. On the northern islands we have had to rebuild roads, water systems, schools, docks, bridges and other critical infrastructure.


MICROPHONES but no one to speak at the Free National Movement HQ last night.

 “In the pandemic, we provided tens of millions of dollars per month in food and unemployment benefits to citizens, along with tax credits to businesses. We fought hard to secure more than half a million doses of three of the best vaccines in the world.

 “The FNM has a proud legacy. We have governed The Bahamas over four terms. Our philosophy is to use the resources of government to provide opportunity to those who have historically been without.

 “That is why we invested in free pre-school, providing early education to thousands of children. That is why we invested in free tertiary education at the University of The Bahamas and BTVI,” he said. 

 “That is why we created the Over-the-Hill initiative to benefit people in grassroots communities with tax concessions and development assistance. That is why we invested record amounts in Family Island infrastructure.

 “That is why we created the Small Business Development Centre, extending millions of dollars to help Bahamians realise their dreams. Our belief in the Bahamian people was also evidenced in the manifesto we ran on in this election. We pledged a universal school meals programme, expanded access to after school programmes, $250 million to Bahamian small businesses over five years, expanded access to Crown land, support for the arts and agriculture and fisheries, along with many more policies for the people.”

 Dr Minnis said while the FNM did not win this time, the next generation of FNMs should stay firm to the party’s ideals.

 “Always put the people first, and be honest in government. The people have asked us to be the opposition. We will ensure the people’s resources are spent properly. We will ensure there is accountability. We will oppose when necessary. We will agree when the government’s plans are in the best interests of the people.”

 He thanked his wife Patricia, his family for their support and the officers and members of the FNM.

 Further he expressed gratitude to Bahamians for his time being as prime minister.

 “You are a strong, hardworking and resilient people. Hurricane Dorian did not break you. The pandemic has not broken you.

 “You trust in the God who has brought us this far. Trust that He will bring us further to brighter times. Again, thank you. And may God bless the Commonwealth of The Bahamas,” Dr Minnis said.

 Shortly after he voted in the Killarney constituency earlier yesterday, Dr Minnis said he thought his party did a remarkable job. He also responded to criticism that this election was called at the wrong time.

 “I would only say when is the best time?” Dr Minnis said at New Providence Community Centre on Blake Road. “Canada called an election. (The) United States had an election. Jamaica had an election. Bermuda had an election, and a host of other countries had an election. The question that one should ask, let’s assume that we had waited until May, and we were still in the pandemic. Do you think the opposition would have allowed us to delay it until we came out of the pandemic?

 “We say we need an extra six months to come out of the pandemic, you think they would? So, when is the right time?”

 Asked whether he had concerns about low voter turnout, Dr Minnis said he was of the view that Bahamians were very anxious to vote as it was their constitutional right.

 He said he anticipated that at least more than 90 percent of the electorate would turn out to vote.


Chucky 2 years ago

Dr Minnis has been shown that we don’t stand for tyranny.

As pm you’ve nearly ruined our country!

Go sit small now, we never want to hear from you again.


mandela 2 years ago

Bye, Bye Minnis Goodbye, and good riddance to you and your crew.


tribanon 2 years ago

This sinister and evil megalomaniac of a tyrant is showing that he knows no shame by not resigning as leader of the FNM party. And the entire governing apparatus of the FNM party under Culmer should be scorned by the public if Minnis is permitted to remain leader of the party after such a spanking by the voters. Can anyone really imagine Minnis ever becoming PM again?!


joeblow 2 years ago

... he doesn't have to resign, I prefer him experiencing the humiliation of being removed by the party in the near future. Everybody and their dog knows Minnis is the reason the FNM lost!


jackbnimble 2 years ago

So it took dynamite (aka a landslide election) to get him out of power and now it will take another stick to get him out of leadership of a defunct party. Get a clue, Sir. Your time is up! Time to pack it up and hand over the reigns. The people DO NOT want you. You are arrogant, egotistical and that packed in with a whole lot of pride has caused your party the election!


ThisIsOurs 2 years ago

Minnis has no moral ground to stand as leader. Even his pronouncement that he will stay on as leader speaks of arrogance. He should have either resigned or spoken of a consultative process to determine the next steps. Shenandon or Pintard for leader in the house, either would do a good job. Pintard might be the more experienced?


tribanon 2 years ago

Had the majority of voters in the Killarney constituency done the right thing, the very arrogant, nasty and vindictive Minnis would not have had the opportunity to so quickly and presumptuously announce his leadership of the opposition.

Sadly, Minnis long ago made sure the entire governing and administrative apparatus of the FNM party was hijacked by the most die-hard of his loyal supporters led by Culmer who see themselves as answerable to no one but Minnis himself.

Of course Minnis is now hoping that he and Davis can spend the next 10-15 years 'tag teaming' the Bahamian people at the polls every 5 years in much the same way that Ingraham and Christie did.


tribanon 2 years ago

P.S.: When it comes to incompetence and corruption, Davis and Minnis are indeed pretty much the same soup, just in different bowls. But let's try to never lose sight of the fact that the soup in Minnis's bowl is laced with pure evil.


Bigrocks 2 years ago

And, if the FNM does not dump Minnis, the PLP will win the next election as well


FrustratedBusinessman 2 years ago

We will see if everyone on the Council wears a dress very soon. It will be very telling if they fail to do what is necessary and get a new leader for the FNM STAT.


DDK 2 years ago

Minnis MUST go, no ifs, ands or butts!

Further, his team had every opportunity to call for a vote of no-confidence in the man, but with few exceptions, his members were quite content to go with the Minnis flow.


TalRussell 2 years ago

Just SOS telephoned the Guardian's Talkie Radio Station's, Security Office, — that they must urgently go to high alert the station's management, — That there's an imposter —Who has taken over the Record with Zhivargo Laing's microphone, —With a talkin' voice, — Sounding identical to that Zhivargo's, — Whose live on-air, pretending, — All along, before 2021 election, — em's wasn't — Shadow Voicing, in favour, — a Minnis's Red Party's re-election, — Yes?


Topdude 2 years ago

Thanks very much Dr Minnis for your exemplary leadership during the most difficult time in the history of the Bahamas. When the history of this period is written objectively by historians they will credit you for shepherding your people out of crisis.

Bahamians are an ungrateful lot and they only value what is in it for them and not what is best in the interest of our nation. They cannot see the big picture and they are therefore mesmerized when a leader of your caliber starts to put our country on a path of transformation.

Not to worry though Dr Minnis your turn will come again and very soon. It will come after the new Government and leaders start to comprehend what are the challenges facing the nation. It is all well and good to seek office but when they assume office they will quickly understand they do not have the capacity to lead the nation.

So Dr Minnis leave office knowing that your legacy is forever positively enshrined in our nation’s history as that Prime Minister who effectively guided the ship of state through stormy seas and delivered it , based on the wishes of a naive electorate who fell for false promises, into the hands of a bunch of crooked jokers.

History has your back Dr. Minnis. God bless you.


joeblow 2 years ago

... Minnis is that you? I have often asked myself why don't they have a thumbs down button!


BONEFISH 2 years ago

Dr.Minnis should resign as party leader. That is how it is done most times in countries that follow the Westminister model of governance. It would allow the FNM to elect a new leader who can start the process of rebuilding the party. In fact, all party offices should be put up for election.

There are quite a number of FNMs who are dissatisfied with Dr.Minnis's leadership. Also quite a number of persons were shoved aside by him for perceived disloyalty. Quite a number of FNM's did not vote in yesterday elections because of their frustration with his leadership.


tribanon 2 years ago


Minnis, Culmer and a whole slew of others who will try their hardest to remain within the FNM party's hierarchy all need to be removed from the party's failed governing and administrative apparatus. And that includes many of the delegates Minnis showered with significant political gifts of one kind or another to secure their undying loyalty to him. Minnis's role in the new parliament should be limited to doing nothing more than representing the constituents of Killarney. If it can at all be avoided, he should not be given a significant shadow minister role or parliamentary committee position.

The very few who think Duane Sands might someday be the answer to resurrecting the FNM party from the dead are delusional to say the least. Sands (like D'Aguilar) will always be politically tone deaf and 'loved' by a majority of the Bahamian people as much as they 'love' a major island-wide power failure during a blistering hot summer's night. In fact, Sands' effectively ended his desired long term political career when he failed to join the dissidents who successfully had Minnis removed as opposition leader in the last Christie-led PLP administration.

Pintard will have to do the heavy lifting for the opposition in parliament while the FNM party cleans just about all scent of Minnis from its house so that it can go about identifying a suitably qualified long term leader of the party. The interfering voices of political dinosaurs like Ingraham, Watson, Symonette, etc. should all be ignored during the FNM party's re-building process which must favour vitalising talented and youthful new blood to avoid future embarrassment at the polls.


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