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Time for FNM to re-evaluate

EDITOR, The Tribune.

The West End and Grand Bahama by-election should be a wake-up call for the FNM. Yes, the PLP poured plenty resources into the contest. They also made plenty promises and signed quite a number of contracts.

It is mostly a PLP seat. Governing parties tend to do well in by-elections. There may have been something of a sympathy vote for Obie Wilchcombe. Still, an overconfident FNM got a royal you-know-what. There may have been a number of reasons for the loss, including the increasing flow of money into elections.

Are more and more voters asking for cash in order to vote? This is a serious problem. Plenty voters, including FNMs, once again stayed home. This is another serious problem.

And Lincoln Bain continues to do well, even if he and his group of independents are unlikely to win seats. But they can spoil the chances of the FNM. The FNM should not underestimate his appeal to certain voters.

Whatever the variety of reasons for the PLP’s win and the FNM’s loss, both parties need to be careful what lessons they learn. An arrogant PLP, whose vote share increased, could easily take the wrong lesson. A by-election is not the same as a general election.

The PLP only got approximately 30 percent of the vote at the last general election. PLP leader Philip Brave Davis was never as popular as he might think or as popular as certain polls might suggest.

The cost of living crisis, including ridiculously high BPL bills, is an economic nightmare for poorer Bahamians and the middle class. And the PLP seems to be living in a bubble of extravagance. The All for Me Baby mindset is alive and well in the PLP.

At the last election, the FNM came relatively close in a good number of seats. The decision to call the election during a COVID-19 wave when people were in the hospital and dying was a disaster. Many FNMs stayed home.

Given the aforementioned and the fact that we have thrown governments out every five years for the past three decades, the FNM should be poised for victory. But they should not take this for granted. The PLP are desperate and hungry to hang on to power and the many benefits it brings.

The FNM should not underestimate this hunger, the PLP’s organisational power, their willingness to promise voters heaven and earth, and their capacity to raise significant election resources from their benefactors.

To win, the FNM needs to get its house in order. This includes strengthening the branches and party associations while securing good candidates.

FNMs are tired of the seemingly endless division between two former leaders and prime ministers. Hubert Ingraham and Hubert Minnis need to repair whatever problems they have and help to unify the party.

If either wants to run for leader again, so be it. If Michael Pintard wants to run again, he should run. Whoever wants to run should do so. The party needs a convention next year. Whoever wins, the party should close ranks and support the leader as we head into the next election.

FNMs have had enough of these big egos fighting each other. Everyone needs to grow up and come together. All Together has been the party’s theme since its beginning.

It is time for leadership. It is time to prepare to take the country in a different direction than the PLP. If the FNM loses the next election because Ingraham, Minnis, Pintard and others cannot come together, this will be a disaster for the FNM but even more so for the country.

If we lose the next election because of infighting, FNMs will not forgive those who kept the party divided for selfish reasons. Good party politics is about adding on not cutting off; coming together not driving apart; building up not tearing down. We need unity!

When the FNM won in 1992, the theme was “Time for a change.” Well, it’s time for the big personalities in the party to change course and come together. Stop the petty games and solve your problems like grown people. The country is waiting and so is the FNM.

HOPEFUL FNM

Nassau,

November 26, 2023

Comments

birdiestrachan 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Hopeful Fnm pseudonym pintard many are still living with OBan reduced reduncey and btc give away . Casual worker's

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sheeprunner12 4 months, 2 weeks ago

The FNM needs to purge the PLP poison out of its body ........... Start with HAI and end with Sands.

That purging has to start TODAY ..................

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