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Concerns raised over FNM delegates list

FNM Leader Dr Hubert Minnis and Loretta Butler-Turner at the FNM rally that saw him see off her challenge to his leadership in 2014.

FNM Leader Dr Hubert Minnis and Loretta Butler-Turner at the FNM rally that saw him see off her challenge to his leadership in 2014.

By KHRISNA VIRGIL

Deputy Chief Reporter

kvirgil@tribunemedia.net

LESS than two weeks before the Free National Movement’s (FNM) highly anticipated national convention, concerns have been heightened over the organisation’s delegates list, The Tribune understands.

The concerns are buttressed by accusations that the list is disproportionate as the majority of delegates are open supporters of Leader Dr Hubert Minnis, who is being challenged by Long Island MP Loretta Butler-Turner for the party's leadership.

The July 27 to 29 convention will see 410 delegates, who have voting power, gather along with party supporters for the event.

However, Senator Carl Bethel, who is also the party’s Rules and Credentials Committee Chairman dismissed the claims saying to his knowledge “nothing untoward” had taken place. The committee deals with internal grievances with process. He said the "bipartisan" committe had dealt with the complaints that they received.

It is also claimed that some supporters of Mrs Butler-Turner, who fully expected to be named on the delegates list, including former party chairman Darron Cash, were intentionally omitted.

This is a “systematic effort” on the part of the Leader to “corrupt” the process, former Senator Cash said on Friday. He accused Dr Minnis of engaging in “ethnic cleansing” with a view to purging the party of anyone who does not support him.

He said: “Quite frankly it is ethnic cleansing. I view it as a systematic effort on the part of the leader to corrupt the process. What he has done specifically with the executive committee members is immoral and unethical.”

Similar views on the matter were tossed around on social media site Facebook, but at least one party insider told The Tribune that the final delegates list had been completed. The insider suggested that the reaction of those in the matter “might be somewhat overblown”.

However, Mr Bethel said to his understanding the list was complete.

Asked if he attributed the concerns to the fact the supporters of the candidates were feeling edgy about the outcome of the convention at the end of the month, Mr Bethel said they simply needed to get out and campaign more.

He said issues had come before his committee but were worked out to the best of its ability.

“I am given to understand that the delegates list was complete but I have not seen it yet,” Mr Bethel said.

“But all complaints were addressed. The associations have the procedures to determine who is chosen as delegates. No one can tell them what’s fair and what’s not. Every delegate is a human being with their right to vote how they feel.

“Once the procedure is fair and proper who can complain? We are involved in a political process so the people complaining need to go out and campaign.”

The Rules and Credentials committee automatically presides over any complaints regarding internal party processes. Mr Bethel said it is bipartisan and operates on consensus.

On Monday, Mr Cash blasted Dr Minnis in a statement accusing the Leader of removing two people from the FNM’s Executive Committee, which he alleged was done “for the purpose of adding a few more votes at convention”.

In this scathing statement released to The Tribune, he accused Dr Minnis of being “petty” and “vindictive,” saying the Killarney MP does not want those who have opposing views around him.

Mr Cash said he had also heard rumours that he, too, was going to be removed from the FNM’s Executive Committee. He said while this has not been confirmed, he would not be surprised if it happened.

Comments

proudloudandfnm 8 years ago

If Minnis wins the FNM is done. Simple as that. The 6 MPs might as well go start a party for real. I'll support them.....

DillyTree 8 years ago

I think we're seeing the depths of corruption and sleight of hand that Minnis will go to. He is not a nice man, but a devious, disingenuous opportunist. No better than the PLP.

Yep, I won't ever vote for Minnis -- and I've been a lifelong FNM. ,

Publius 8 years ago

What FNM supporters in the country should be equally as concerned about is the amount of senior FNMs, FNM Council Members and voting delegates who have absolutely no problem with this kind of activity. These are the kinds of accusations the FNM has hurled at the PLP for ages. Now both stand accused and in the words of the great Isaac Hayes, the accused are guilty. The rot in the country's political parties will require a major purge to even have the remotest chance of being addressed.

SP 8 years ago

More aptly put......."Good Riddance"

licks2 8 years ago

What a buncha losers. . .yall stop talking trash because yinna know that yall will get yinna behind cut! Yall will not go anywhere. . .NOBODY WANT YINNA AROUND THEM!

licks2 8 years ago

Now I hearing that the whole "convention coup" is over and done. . .the LBT fraction has possibly conceded. . .or is it because LBT has not paid the promised $100, 000 for her share of the money to foot the bill for the convention?

I hear that doc done paid his promised $100,000 but LBT has not as yet. . .she only paid $50,000 so far. . .Why they want her and doc to pay for the convention is beyond me. . .it's a party affair. . .I don't think either should have to pay out of their pockets. . .but that's me. . .it is not fair! LBT. . .I will not see you as adverse because you will not pay that money. . .what if you lose. . .it will not be worth $100,000 of your hard earned money. . .if others on the side line want to see the "big fight". . .let them pay the tab!

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