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Minnis ‘blindsided’ by letter

Dr Hubert Minnis

Dr Hubert Minnis

By KHRISNA VIRGIL

Deputy Chief Reporter

kvirgil@tribunemedia.net

KILLARNEY MP Dr Hubert Minnis yesterday admitted that he was blindsided by the actions of the seven “rebel” MPs who moved to have his appointment as leader of the Official Opposition in the House of Assembly revoked, while insisting that democracy will not be “subverted” by this latest attempt to have him ousted.

Moments after the thrice-elected Free National Movement leader sat through a gut-wrenching reading by House Speaker Dr Kendal Major of a letter of no confidence from the seven MPs, Dr Minnis responded calling their actions a rebellion, which he attributed to them not achieving their desired result following the party’s July convention.

He said despite these “saddening” efforts, democracy will always prevail and suggested that their move would ultimately be rejected by the Bahamian people.

Dr Minnis went on to declare that while the incident was “unfortunate,” Bahamians would still vote in favour of the FNM in the next general election.

The MPs who signed the letter of no confidence were Long Island MP Loretta Butler-Turner, Central Grand Bahama MP Neko Grant, St Anne’s MP Hubert Chipman, North Eleuthera Theo Neilly, Central and South Abaco MP Edison Key, Montagu MP Richard Lightbourn, and Fort Charlotte MP Dr Andre Rollins.

Renward Wells, the Bamboo Town MP, and East Grand Bahama MP Peter Turnquest did not sign on to this request to remove Dr Minnis.

When she spoke in the House of Assembly during the evening session, Mrs Butler-Turner thanked her colleagues for reposing confidence in her to lead in the House.

She acknowledged that their actions would most likely spark fallout, but said an important lesson to respect the contribution of others must be taken from yesterday’s events.

“Mr Speaker, very, very soon we will be going to an election and the people again will elect a democratic government,” Dr Minnis said Wednesday morning. “If we have individuals like we see here today, if the results are not what they intended to be or what they want, then we could be headed towards an undemocratic society and possibly one of dictatorship.

“The Bahamian people are witnessing the subversion of democracy here today and these individuals they are having their way (now), but the Bahamian people would eventually have their say.

“Democracy will always rule in this Bahamas and I as I stand here as leader of the Opposition until they carry their letter to the governor general and as leader to the Free National Movement, (which) was democratically elected to such a position, and the Free National Movement will democratically move towards a democratic electoral process.

“Through the process of democracy the people realise that we are about to change and reform this country and they will remain with the Free National Movement in the interest of democracy.

“But Mr Speaker, as I am hearing this for the first time, it saddens me that individuals are prepared because they did not get their way in a democratic process, they are determined to subvert democracy and still make their way.”

Dr Minnis also said: “Mr Speaker it is unfortunate that I am hearing of such an occurrence. However, Mr Speaker, we are at a time when democracy truly prevails in our society. I believe in democracy. I believe in reform and this country needs reform.

“Unfortunately reform, Mr Speaker, is not easy it’s painful. When one thinks of reform one thinks, as an obstetrician/gynecologist, one thinks of a lady having a baby, which is very painful and at the end the most enlightening and meaningful event would have just been completed and the admiration and the peace of the world would have been brought forward.”

‘Deceptive’

Speaking to reporters following yesterday’s shocking House session, Mr Key explained why he had a change of heart to now sign the letter of no confidence, siding with the majority of opposition MPs.

Mr Key previously revealed he had been approached by several FNM’s to express a vote of no confidence in Dr Minnis, but declined to at the time.

However he said this time around, he joined the effort to remove the Killarney MP after he was “betrayed” and “treated like a dog”.

Mr Key said the actions of the group were likely to earn them an expulsion from the FNM. When asked to reveal his feelings about this, Mr Key seemed indifferent.

“I supported him but he betrayed me. He turned his back on me. He sent a crew up there (to Abaco) - C A Smith, (FNM Chairman Sidney) Collie, (Deputy FNM Leader) Peter (Turnquest), Mike Smith - some of those people who couldn’t even win a seat,” Mr Key said.

“He sent them up there to meet with small group of dissidents, the people who came down on the last convention to vote him out of office and he joined with them against me. They never supported him and I stuck my neck out against all of the odds of the rest of the crew and supported him. He turned his back on me so what I must do?”

“Minnis is a very deceptive person,” Mr Key added. “You cannot take his word and I hope the Bahamian people realise that out there. I mean I was the only person, the only single member who was supporting him during this whole episode between him and Loretta.

“(Now Loretta) is more qualified. I went against them (first) when they decided for Loretta to send the letter to the governor general before it was only because of the lack of my signature why it didn’t go. (But) now they have treated me like a dog and an outsider (so I have signed the letter).”

This comes just two days after a report in The Nassau Guardian in which Mr Key lambasted Dr Minnis over the Central and South Abaco constituency nomination.

For his part, Mr Turnquest said he was “surprised” and caught off guard by yesterday’s events.

Meanwhile, Mr Wells told reporters he was not shocked by this latest effort to remove Dr Minnis.

Comments

sheeprunner12 7 years, 7 months ago

Is Minnis that politically naive???????? Well he deserved what he got ......... period

Tarzan 7 years, 7 months ago

LBT and Bran: Please talk. Please set aside ego. Please recognize that the very survival of the nation is in your hands! Join together and we can end this plague of ineptitude, corruption and folly. Stand alone and we all go down with you.

Alex_Charles 7 years, 7 months ago

Ego is the force that will see the PLP in power for another 5 years. At this point, if Alfred become the PLP leader he has my vote. I'm depressed just saying that...

I don't think the destruction of the Bahamas is avoidable anymore, we are only children in a den of child molesters trying to find help. No matter what we do, we will get taken advantage of. :(

proudloudandfnm 7 years, 7 months ago

If Minnis truly cares about the country and the party he'll resign immediately.

The man is incapable of leading....

proudloudandfnm 7 years, 7 months ago

Minnis was also blindsided by the leader job too hey?

I wonder who is the most useless person in the HOA today? I think it's a toss up between Michael Darville and Minnis...

Well_mudda_take_sic 7 years, 7 months ago

The FNM party is no more and the root cause of its demise was Hubiggity's piss poor sore loser conduct in response to the thrashing he received from Christie in the last general election. Hubiggity's angst and utter disgust at the conclusion of the 2012 general election resulted in shameful post-election bahaviour on his part. Hubiggity's disgraceful walkaway from the FNM party back then created a power vacuum easily filled by a blithering incompetent corrupt imbecile with zero charisma and absolutely no ability to think quickly while standing on his feet to address or debate anything. We all know Minnis was never possessed of the qualities necessary to be or become a political leader; he could never overcome his many obvious limitations. Hubiggity knew all of this when he observed Minnis maneuvering to fill the leadership role in the opposition and the FNM party shortly after the last general election. But, like a spiteful child, Hubiggity did nothing to prevent the disaster he undoubtedly knew would be coming the FNM's way under the failed leadership of Minnis.

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