March 2002

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Volume 3  © Fred Mitchell 2002
While material on this web site can be used freely by other sections of the press, as a courtesy, journalists are asked to attribute the source of their material from this web site.
10th March
17th March
24th March
31st March
3rd March, 2002
This Week on
Bahamas Government Website
John Carey / PLP Carmichael... Melanie Griffin / PLP Yamacraw
Alfred Sears / PLP Fort Charlotte... Bahamians First.Com / PLP Grand Bahama
Shane Gibson / Golden Gates...  Bradley Roberts / PLP Grants Town...
Click on a heading to go to that story; press ctrl+home to return to the top of the page.



The Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham and his party the Free National Movement went down to resounding defeat on Wednesday 27 February 2002. Their spin doctors and apologists are trying to make-up all sorts of stories about the whys and the wherefores.  The simple fact is they were beaten and beaten convincingly.  This Senator believes that his position from the start that he would vote no has been fully vindicated.  The lesson for the PLP is that the role of a political party is to shape public opinion, not the other way around.  We must be informed by public opinion but the duty to lead is the role of a political party.

We therefore must congratulate the Leader of the Opposition Perry Christie and his team for the skilful manner in which this whole thing was handled.

On the other hand we have nothing but scorn for this jackass that we call our Prime Minister.  He had to concede defeat just after 9:30 p.m. on the night of the referendum.  But the next day, he was back true to form.  He refused to resign making some spurious distinction by saying that this was a vote not against the FNM and himself but against the issues raised in the referendum.  That is utter foolishness and is at variance with every known convention of the constitution.

The only event that we ought to now be discussing is the outcome of the general election.  But here we have a Prime Minister who refuses to step down, and the Opposition forces have not yet rallied themselves to force him to go.

At this press conference, he showed no contrition, no repentance, and no remorse.  He just continued along like nothing happened. In fact he said that he is ashamed of the Bahamian people for having voted no.  Then he proceeded to jump on a plane to a Heads of Government meeting in Australia on the strength of the same Bahamian people’s tax moneys.  We should be out in the streets, forcing him and his Government to go.

We analyse the results below, and report on some interesting political aspects of what went on over the last week.  This week we had 35,733 hits on the site for the week ending 2nd March at midnight.  That means a total of 140,097 hits for the month of February.  That means the total hits for the month of March is 6,325.  Thanks for reading and please keep reading.

by Nello Lambert, taken at 'Montrose' - Christmas 2000

by Kendal Demeritte

Funk’s Short Corner 

From The PLP
To The Bahamian People

Let’s Go Steady One More Time
You left me for another,
You found out he wasn’t a true lover
On Wed. 27th when he attempted to give your sovereignty to another.
But that’s all in the past,
Let’s forget him,
He wouldn’t hurt you anymore
I wouldn’t let him, 

Let’s go steady one more time.
I know he was wrong to come to you the way that he did
Cause after all he was but my best friend.
So please don’t cry 
You’ve got to be strong.
He’ll never hurt you anymore,
I know he was wrong
But that’s all in the past… Let’s forget him
Let’s goooooo steady…. ONE MORE TIME! 

To the Dream Team 
“In a room of a thousand voices, there is a sound you have come to… NO!"

12th Review of the Judiciary
11th Review of the Judiciary
Mitchell Address to Senate: Why the PM is the way he is
Mitchell speech to PLP Convention 2000
Pindling & Me - A personal retrospective on the life and times of Sir Lynden by Fred Mitchell
Address to the Senate Budget Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to the Senate Clifton Cay Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to PLP Leadership meeting in Exuma / Haitian Issue

Address of Sean McWeeney / Pindling  funeral
Gilbert Morris on OECD Blacklist
Fred Mitchell Antioch College speech
The funeral coverage

For a photo essay on the funeral of Archdeacon William Thompson. Click here.

Professor Gilbert Morris on the country's blacklisting  Coverage of Sir Lynden's death & funeral


Site Links
The PLP Position on Clifton Canadian contacts Reg & Kit's Bahamas Links Bahamian Cycling News Links to Bahamians on the web Politics Forum Harbour Island Site



   The Prime Minister and the FNM lost the referendum vote on all five questions and in every constituency with the exception of Long Island and North and South Abaco.  Even in the areas that were FNM constituencies in New Providence they lost.  Brent Symonette, the son of the former UBP Premier, who is the FNM candidate, turned out a strong FNM team in Montagu, the bastion of the FNM vote in New Providence.  He ended up going down to defeat on the five questions.  The Bahamian people simply did not buy this business about gender equality being eliminated.  They were confused by the legal issues and the political issues.  In the absence of clarity on these issues they voted no.  There was a low turn out of voters.  On average it appears that 30 per cent of the voters stayed at home.  This in a country where in general elections, 90 per cent of the voting population routinely turns out to vote.
    The no vote came about through a coalition of interests:  the Church led by Archbishop Drexel Gomez and Christian Council President Bishop Sam Greene.  There was the Progressive Liberal Party and disgruntled FNM leaders and voters, both black and white.  Even in Grand Bahama that is supposed to be FNM country, the Prime Minister and his FNM lost in every constituency.  Perry Christie the Leader of the Opposition was sanguine in his response to the vote.  He claimed it was a victory for all the Bahamian people.  But in political terms, it is clear that Mr. Christie and his PLP are in a better position today arguing and defending the victory of the no votes, than if they had lost to the Prime Minister and his yes votes.  The FNM itself is dispirited and disorganized.  That makes them dangerous.  They are concerned now that their financial backers are going to back pedal.
    We reported last week that some FNM candidates were bitterly complaining that they were lacking resources for the general election because Mr. Ingraham had used the resources they had in this national referendum.  Some FNM leaders were behind the scenes calling for the resignation of Mr. Ingraham.  Some said that he should stay on to give Tommy Turnquest and Dion Foulkes, the hapless pair of Leader and Deputy Leader designate, time to recoup.  Mr. Turnquest tried to put the best spin on things when he said that the FNM would still win the general election; that the referendum result has nothing to do with the election.  Their difficulty is that it was Mr. Ingraham himself who said that he stood or fell on the referendum result.  He said that whoever won the referendum would win the general election.  When confronted by reporters about those remarks, Mr. Ingraham gave flippant answers and then grinned away like a Cheshire cat.  The bottom line is that this was an ignominious defeat and Mr. Ingraham and the FNM should go and go now.  From left, Mr. Christie, Archbishop Gomez and Bishop Greene.

    This Senator began to receive reports on Wednesday 27 February that the Prime Minister had called for the files of some 3000-5000 files of the children of Haitian parents born in The Bahamas in order to process their citizenship applications and grant them so that they can vote in the next election.  PLP candidate Leslie Miller reported to the PLP’s Political Committee that Blue Hills Candidate Dion Foulkes was boasting that some 400 citizenships had already been granted to persons living in his constituency just in time for the election.
    Eileen Carron in an editorial in The Tribune on Thursday 28 February wrote that the reports were rumours.  She quoted the Deputy Director of Immigration as saying that the reports were untrue.  But senior Immigration Officers told this Senator that the reports are correct.  That several immigration officers were pulled out from their regular duties to update and process the citizenship applications so that the Government can grant them before the elections.
    The Immigration Department has officially a different story.  They say that the Prime Minister called immigration and requested that he be updated on the status of citizenship applications.  The Prime Minister complained that persons were approaching him saying that there was a delay by his Government in dealing with citizenship applications.  He ordered the review.  While on the face of it, this seems benign, the PLP and this spokesman will continue to monitor this.  We believe that citizenship applications granted just for the purpose of winning an election is wrong.

    The FNM under Hubert Ingraham keeps talking about how they brought class back to Government House.  It was of course just propaganda designed to belittle Sir Clifford Darling who was the predecessor of Sir Orville Turnquest in the job.  One way to objectively tell that is whether the so called class that Sir Orville brought to Government House has rubbed off on his FNM appointed successor Dame Ivy Dumont.  One would have thought that she having been in the Government and the public service ought to know better.
    The Tribune of Thursday 28 February reported that the Governor General voted in the referendum.  This is certainly a first and violates every constitutional convention that we know of.  The Governor General does not vote.  It does not say that in the constitution, but the persons who are appointed to the office can’t be dummies.  They are supposed to know the conventions of the constitution and the Governor General of all persons has a staff.  Nothing she does as a public matter should be done without advice.  The Queen does not get involved in partisan politics and political or controversial matters.  The Governor General is an agent of the Queen and so the agent cannot do what the principal cannot.  It is simple and straightforward.  But the problem is when you have people who are too smart for their own good in Government House and in the Government.

    The Prime Minister was at his nastiest when he attacked the Anglican Archbishop Drexel Gomez for asking the Government to pause before holding the national referendum.  The Prime Minister later issued a kind of apology but it was too late.  Then he went on a public platform and told the country that Paul Adderley whose legal opinion it was that the process and the substance were flawed, was tired, old, broken down and rejected.  That sealed the Prime Minister’s fate.  In those circumstances he lost the senior citizen vote.


   The Member of Parliament for Marathon Algernon Allen, a former FNM cabinet Minister, now a backbencher has told the country that he voted ‘NO’ in the referendum.  He said in The Tribune that he was persuaded by the arguments of the church that there should be more discussion on the subject.  He said that he knew other FNM senators and MPs who also voted no.  Mr. Allen said that this was a lesson for all leaders to learn.
    Mr. Allen said: “This is a lesson which can affect the FNM greatly.  It gives us time to regroup, it gives us time to perform the radical surgery to our political approach, to our machinery and to our focus because I do believe that radical surgery is needed so that the FNM can best pursue a third term and ensure victory in the upcoming general election.  The FNM must win first so that we can govern, not win at all costs, but do all things that take all necessary measures that are reasonable to win.  The party cannot make apologies for its defeat of the amendments.  The party must accept there were fundamental political and legal errors that were made and we must move now.” Guardian photo of Archbishop Gomez and Mr. Allen.

    On the night of the last public political meeting before the referendum, the night of Monday 26 February, the Prime Minister told his supporters that he, the child of a single woman, would never do what his opponents were saying that he did, take away by the proposed amendments the right of a single woman to pass on her citizenship to her child born abroad.  He said he must be dreaming.  He said: “Chile Pinch me! Pinch me! I must be dreaming”.  PLP supporters on the day after the referendum result were all going around in the country saying: “Pinch me! Pinch me! I must be dreaming.”


    On Saturday 23 February, this Senator got a call.  Senator Obie Wilchcombe had been alerted by friendly police officers that the ballot boxes with the sealed ballots from the advance poll taken by Police and Defence Force officers were being moved and taken to new location without the escort of the party agents from Grand Bahama.  A huge crowd followed the news, and surrounded the place where the Parliamentary Commissioner was.
    Senator Wilchcombe (pictured) and Senator Marcus Bethel were later allowed to watch over the process of the transfer of the ballots into the proper ballot boxes for use on referendum morning.  It shows how vigilant you have to be with regard to the conduct of elections.  We congratulate the people of Grand Bahama for catching the Government with its hand in the cookie jar, trying to fiddle with the result.  As it turns out, it did not matter; the Government lost the vote 60 to 40 in Freeport and Grand Bahama as well.


   People started to gather at the Fox Hill PLP headquarters from just after the polls closed.  The earliest results came in from Farmers Cay in Exuma.  That is the ancestral home of Carl Bethel, the Attorney General.  The vote was overwhelmingly against the Government, and that trend never changed throughout the country.  Darrold Miller who is universally reviled by PLPs for bias was ebullient up to the time of the Prime Minister’s concession at 9:30 p.m.  Our supporters were silent as he gave the result and then he appeared to choke and asked his viewers to bear with him while he took a break for some water.  The crowd in the Headquarters burst out in laughter.  Michelle Malcolm, the other presenter, who most people believe is a PLP, rose to the occasion and openly contradicted the assertions of Mr. Miller during his analysis.  It was like she got a second wind.
    Meanwhile at Gambier House, the headquarters of the party, thousands of people surfaced.  Bradley Roberts, the Party Chairman made the first statement on behalf of the PLP saying that it was on to the general election.  PLP leader Perry Christie appeared later to address the crowd.  It was pure delight and absolute pandemonium.  Next afternoon Mr. Christie addressed the media telling them that this was a victory for the people of The Bahamas.  You may click here for Mr. Christie’s complete statement. Guardian photos by Donald Knowles.

Back To The Top

    The Prime Minister has been accused by the Leader of the Opposition of engaging in a fraud on the Parliament of The Bahamas.  Part of the defence of the bills put to the people for approval in the referendum was that the distinction between legitimate and illegitimate children was eliminated.  The Status of Children Bill purports to make all children equal.  That is fine as far as it goes.  But the Prime Minister said during his debate that the bill affects the citizenship of the children born out of wedlock in that it would no longer matter whether the child’s parents were married, if the father, putative or legal were Bahamian, you would now be Bahamian no matter where you were born.  That would revolutionize the Bahamian constitution in that citizenship of a child is derived in the case of married people from the father in most cases and in the case of single women from the mother.
    The Government in the defeated amendments sought to remove the provision in Article 14 that protects that right for single Bahamian women.  Fortunately the matter is now dead with the referendum now having failed.  Except that the Bill is still law.  It did not require approval of the people.  And the problem is that the bill that passed the House and Senate known as the Status of Children Bill was not the bill that made it to the Governor General’s office for signature.  That Bill said that citizenship rights were not affected by the bill.  Which means that what the Government was saying in their referendum campaign was not true.  Paul Adderley and Sean McWeeney spotted the error.  This senator got the version of the bill that he voted on and sure enough that Bill said that citizenship was excepted from the equality effects of the Bill but the official gazetted version had that section missing.
    So the question is how did the Governor General get a bill that was different from the one passed in the House and the Senate?  And since that was the wrong bill signed, it cannot be the law. The Prime Minister has been frantically trying to justify his actions, telling the press that he was unaware of the problem.  Paul Adderley has now gone to court on behalf of the Progressive Liberal Party to get an order setting aside the fake bill and substituting the real bill.  The question is who is responsible for this fraud and is this not a criminal matter for which someone in the Government ought to be charged?

    The Prime Minister conceded defeat in the referendum vote at about 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday 27 February before even one third of the votes were in.  He said in a faxed statement to the press: “The results of the Referendum clearly indicate that the Bahamian populace have voted no on each of the proposed amendments to the Constitution in today’s referendum vote.  This is a rejection of the last but one of my assignments.  I accept full and complete responsibility for this result.  I wish to thank all those who came out and voted in the referendum.  I thank all who made the past nine and a half years of a Government led by me possible.  I will as planned meet with the Press tomorrow morning at the Cabinet Office.”

    The next day, the Prime Minister held a press conference and said the following: “ I am ashamed, but I accept it.  This is is my first major defeat.  I accept it and move on… I feel very comfortable with history saying that when Hubert Ingraham was prime minister of The Bahamas he sought to get The Bahamas to deepen its democracy and he sought to get The Bahamas to be in compliance with these very fundamental international conventions with respect to human rights of women and children and their spouses.  History will show that I was on the right side.”

    Mr. Ingraham when asked if he stood by the remark made in the campaign that the side that won the referendum vote would win the general election said: “I was mistaken.  I said many things and that was one of the mistakes I made.”

    When asked about the remark that he said he would stand or fall by the result of the referendum, he said: “Well I have fallen”.  He then began to laugh.  Tribune photo.


    As the results became clear, Perry Christie Leader of the Opposition made the following statement at Gambier House, the PLP’s Headquarters in Nassau:  “The results of today’s referendum are enormously gratifying.  Democracy has triumphed.  The tyranny of arrogant falsehood today lies slain on the field of battle.  Truth has emerged victorious.  It is a great and joyous day for The Bahamas.  To God be the glory.  This is not, however, an occasion for gloating by those who campaigned so vigorously for the result that has been achieved because the real winners tonight are the Bahamian people.”
    The Tribune showed two photographs on their front page on Thursday 27 January, the day after the referendum.  It showed a jubilant scene outside PLP headquarters and an empty room inside FNM headquarters.  Nevertheless, Tommy Turnquest, the Leader designate of the FNM, said that the election result did not mean that the FNM would lose the election. He said the FNM was still the party of choice for the Bahamian people.  Yeah right!

    As we go to press there is an unsubstantiated report from a source close to the FNM that says that Orville Turnquest, the former Governor General is furious that Hubert Ingraham has wasted valuable political capital on the referendum exercise.  He is hopping mad said the source. “Daddy has been constantly on the line, working the phones arranging a conclave for Sunday 3 March 2002.  He is telling FNMs that Ingraham must go.  He says that Mr. Ingraham is the only man between Junior (Tommy) and the Office of Prime Minister and Mr. Ingraham must go.”  That is a quote from our source.
    Now Mr. Ingraham acting in the dictator mode should know better.  When you leave town, (he is now in Australia presumably telling his fellow Prime Minister how ashamed he is of us) you better take every body with you.  If you don’t the fellows you leave behind will overthrow you.

    The Prime Minister is such a selfish fellow.  Not only has he refused to resign and gone off to Australia on a useless jaunt on behalf of people he says that he is ashamed of, he has taken his favourite public servant with him.  You will recall that on this web site several weeks ago (click here for the story) we told you that his Permanent Secretary M. Teresa Butler had retired and was to be made the Chairman of the Public Service Commission.  They must have got cold feet when they saw that on your web site, said our source.  But apparently not cold enough.
    The Opposition should officially call for the list of the delegation going to Australia.  This is to a Commonwealth Heads of Government Conference that has no strong political issues with which to deal, except to call for Zimbabwe to stop suppressing the people of the country in their legitimate right to get a truly democratically elected President.  But what we now understand is that Ms. Butler has been rehired by the Bahamas Government as a special advisor to the Prime Minister.  The question is where the authority is for his in law.  What budgetary allocations have been made for it?  Is this not an abuse of the system?  The Government must explain what this is all about.  Ms. Butler is believed to be a part of the delegation to Australia.

Back To The Top


    Michael Halkitis (pictured) has become known as Mike the Giant Killer after the results in the Adelaide constituency on referendum day.  Frank Watson, the Deputy Prime Minister, now under a cloud of allegations of corruption, went around his New Providence constituency twisting arms.  You have to do this one for me.  The party needs you.  The constituency showed him better than they could tell him and voted against the bills in the referendum, defeating the Government in all polling divisions.

    Eileen Carron, who is the Editor of The Tribune, is becoming more retrograde, out to lunch and politically dishonest than ever.  She wrote an editorial under the headline  ‘The People have spoken, but were they duped?’  This was simply stupid.  This is obviously a bitter woman.  Here is a sample: “These opposition politicians who voted ‘yes’ in parliament on the referendum amendments to make themselves look good when history is written, had advised their supporters to vote ‘no’.  The people did their dirty work for them.  And it is the people who will look backward and foolish when history is written.
    “Deep down many of those politicians are tarred with the same male chauvinist brush as their constituents.  They dare not show their true colours in parliament for fear of it being used against them - can’t afford to lose the little woman’s vote you know! And to many “little women” are just too dumb to understand that they are being used - they are the ones who work their fingers off during an election - and abused…
    “Yes, the people have spoken, but with a voice that’s sent out many messages.  In our opinion the historic referendum process was hijacked and the people were duped.”
    Well as we said that is foolishness and ignorance on her part. A bitter, bitter woman indeed.

    Following the various outbursts from the public platform by Prime Minister Ingraham, this Senator had a chat with some psychologists about the Prime Minister’s state of mind.  They indicate that he has two problems: that of a chip on his shoulder because of psychological injuries in his childhood that have not healed; secondly it appears that we are dealing with someone who is making decisions in a drunken haze. Click here for the full address on the subject. The address was delivered at the PLP’s rally on Windsor Park on Monday 25 February 2002.

    You can click here for a complete summary of the poll results. The results show that 66 per cent of the voters turned out to vote. You may click here for more.


    Cynthia Mother Pratt, the PLP's Deputy Leader described herself as numb after her constituency office burned on Friday 1 March.  The entire inside of the building and its contents were gutted.  But she added that she was down but not out and grateful that there had been no loss of life.  Mrs. Pratt told this writer that the police are continuing their investigations but it is thought to have been an electrical fire.  Her campaign headquarters is another building, but the community room and library and the office where she met her constituents was destroyed. Tribune photo.

    Jerome Fitzgerald the CEO of RND Cinemas told The Tribune in its business section Tuesday 26 February that it no longer has the lion’s share of the cinema business in The Bahamas, after having been the pioneer of the multi-screen concept in the country.  Galleria Cinemas now has a 55 per cent market share.  The RND stock has also slid badly and it appears that some shareholders are restless.  The Tribune asked Mr. Fitzgerald about the slide in the share price and he accused a disgruntled shareholder of working with his competitors to undermine the price of the stock…

    The Bahamas Institute of Chartered Accountants in a letter to the Government on Wednesday 27 February warned the Government that the nation’s trust industry would almost certainly disappear if they followed the compliance procedures of other jurisdictions in the harmful tax initiative procedures being forced on us by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).  The rumour is that the Government has agreed to enter into tax information exchange agreements with the 29 member organization's states.  This contradicts a promise by the Prime Minister that he would only enter into an information exchange treaty with the United States.  The Institute also warned of the overall significant impact any further initiatives by OECD could have on the overall economy of The Bahamas.


    We were all treated to an exceptional show of Bahamian art with the show by my godson John Cox and Michael Edwards, one of his fellow artists.   For Mr. Cox, it is a maturing exhibition, new themes and some retrospective in a new age.  And of course newly shorn of his locks. He is and remains comfortable in his skin and in his decision to be an artist.  It shows in these works.  Michael Edwards is new to us and his work is innovative and experiential. The show is at Mr. Cox’s studio in Chippingham and started on Friday 2 March.  Mr. Cox is shown in a Tribune photo with some of his new pieces and a piece by Michael Edwards.


    For the first time since 1997, Grand Bahama does not go home with the Hugh Campbell Tournament trophy.  This is the signature Basketball Tournament for High School seniors.  Some people are saying that St. Augustine’s continues to cause its students to lose out because they will not participate because of a two year dispute over the age requirements of the tournament.  This year it was more popular than ever.  The game was won by the C.I. Gibson Rattlers, the New Providence top team and now the nation’s top high school team.  The Rattlers defeated the Catholic High Crusaders of Grand Bahama 51-49 on Monday 25 February.  The Tribune published a great photo by Felipe Major showing the youngsters and their coach celebrating their victory.  Congratulations to them.

Plots & Plotters - Interesting word from what was once called FNM Country that a plot is now being hatched where Frank Watson, currently acting Prime Minister would himself leave the country, allowing Tommy Turnquest to be appointed acting Prime Minister.  Somehow, or so the story goes, the plotters would then contrive to keep both Prime Minister Ingraham and Deputy Prime Minister Watson abroad until after the General Election.  Don't you just love the political season?

FNM  Faces Money Ultimatum - Usually reliable sources report to News From Grand Bahama that the FNM's leadership-in-waiting (Sir Orville & Tommy Turnquest and Dion Foulkes) have been told by their eastern road money men that confidence has been lost in the FNM's ability to stand up for the country!  The money men cite the FNM's mishandling of relations with the Organization for Economic and Co-operative Development (OECD),  the labour bills which they see as a betrayal, and finally, the proposition to sign broad tax information exchange treaties.  The party's financiers are said to be threatening to withdraw their support, in favour of a party which will "look out for our interests".  News wonders exactly whose interests they're talking about.  It's one of those things that you believe when you actually see it.  Things that make you go, hmmm!

Ingraham To Be Deposed?  Word has it that the FNM Parliamentary Group has scheduled a conclave for Sunday 10 March at South Ocean Beach Hotel in Nassau where they proposed to face the Prime Minister with word that he has lost the confidence of the majority of FNM MPs.  Our source says that at that time, he will be invited to visit Government Hill and inform the Governor General that someone new should be appointed.  The trouble with this is, why would they wait until the 10th when the Prime Minister would have returned?  Seasoned observers say that if anything like this threatens, Mr. Ingraham will avoid it all by the immediate dissolution of Parliament.

I Never Agreed With It - Grand Bahama FNM MP David Thompson was on the air in Grand Bahama this past week, post referendum, saying that the referendum process was not the FNM way of doing business.  Yeah, right.  More credibly, former FNM Minister Maurice Moore said he was unhappy with the process and voted no.

FNM Council Contretemps -  The inevitable scuffles and backbiting within the FNM are picking up steam in the wake of the party's crushing defeat in the national referendum.  News From Grand Bahama's FNM Council informant tells us that, incredibly,  cabinet ministers have been complaining that the referendum was never discussed in cabinet.  "We only got a package, delivered by police, telling us what was going to happen and that we should support it." one cabinet minister is reported to have whined.  Not to be outdone, the FNM Council is said to have scolded cabinet ministers for not reporting the matter to them so that the embarrassing defeat could have been avoided.  Can you believe this?  Also at that council meeting, Fox Hill MP Juanianne Dorsett is said to have called on some supporters of the FNM who were "in the room" to apologize for going against the party in the referendum.  At this point, former FNM Vice Chair for Grand Bahama Mike Edwards, who had held an anti-referendum town meeting, rose to say that he had nothing for which to apologize and that his order of things was God, country and party at the bottom.

Michael Edwards Town Meeting - It lived up to expectations as the last town meeting before the referendum.  Sponsored by Michael Edwards, the former FNM Vice Chair for Grand Bahama, betrayed out of his post by the party.  The speakers were women's advocate and attorney Constance McDonald,  leading FNM legal light Harvey Tynes Q.C., constitutional lawyer Maurice Glinton and attorney Fred Smith.  Speaker after speaker rose to lead the audience - point by point - through a litany of examples of bad drafting and inconsistency in the proposed constitutional amendments.  The meeting got out of control when Fred Smith opened his remarks by attempting to berate and belittle the PLP.  "We ain'' come here for this," said one, "Sit your a.. down," shouted someone else.  The meeting degenerated almost to a riot until the organizers were forced to retrieve the microphone from Mr. Smith.  At this point, he began to address the crowd in his ancestral creole, provoking even more outrage from the crowd.  The meeting was carried on live radio in Nassau and in Freeport, with organizers claiming that it may have been the final push needed to defeat the Government's position on the referendum.

Resorts at Bahamia - After weeks of Bahamians being unfairly displaced and needlessly disrespected at Resorts at Bahamia, the property is now under threat of strike action by the Bahamas Hotel, Catering and Allied Workers Union.  Union President Pat Bain has said that Bahamians left in the hotel's management team were nothing more than figureheads with titles who apparently could not stand up on behalf of the workers.  The FNM MPs on Grand Bahama, most of whom are also top level Government officials, have been so far powerless to protect workers at Resorts.  We suggest that the the workers there stand up for themselves on election day.

Ingraham's Shame Goes International - CNN's ticker tape reported Sunday morning 3 March that Bahamians had rejected constitutional amendments which would have "given women more rights" and that Prime Minister Ingraham was "ashamed".  In discussion groups across Grand Bahama, this gave rise to a call of shame on the Prime Minister for opening the country to international ridicule.  Said one political observer, "A referendum is the highest expression of democracy and for him to go international and talk about shame is a slap in the face to the Bahamian people... If he has a problem with the choice and the wishes of the people he should step down, because he governs not for himself but for and on behalf of the Bahamian people."  Well said. 


8.15pm Sunday 10 March, 2002 - The General Election is to be held on Thursday 2nd May, 2002.  In a national address at 8pm Sunday 10 March, 2002, Prime Minister Ingraham announced that he would prorogue the House of Assembly until 3rd April and advise the Governor General to issue a writ of election on Thursday 4th April for the General Election to be held.  Persons not yet on the voters register may register to vote up to and including Tuesday 2nd April, 2002.

10th March, 2002
This Week on
Bahamas Government Website
John Carey / PLP Carmichael... Melanie Griffin / PLP Yamacraw
Alfred Sears / PLP Fort Charlotte... Bahamians First.Com / PLP Grand Bahama
Shane Gibson / Golden Gates...  Bradley Roberts / PLP Grants Town...
Click on a heading to go to that story; press ctrl+home to return to the top of the page.



We reported the murder of Kirk Ferguson two weeks ago in Fox Hill.  On Monday 25 February, shots rang out around our political headquarters, there was a street chase and then a car crash, followed by more shots and man lay dead on the ground.  The police came.  One half of the people were happy that he was dead.  They were openly saying that he had been involved in the murder of a young man from Fox Hill who was found burned up on the back of a truck on the East West Highway.

On the other side was a family that was in grief for the death of their loved one Mr. Ferguson.  They were openly saying that things were not going to go “like that”.  The police put out bulletins for the wanted persons, and then melted away as they began their investigations.

On Tuesday 5 March, shots again rang out in Fox Hill, this time a gunman who remains unidentified came into the home of Rosemary Bennett-Wright.  The gunman shot through the door, then went into the room and fired shots at point blank range, killing Mrs. Bennett Wright, her 7 year old son Jakeel and the child Mrs. Bennett-Wright was carrying.  Two other persons were wounded and hospitalized.  The family believes that the person who did it was the one who was held by the police for two days but released.  He had bashed the door down looking for Rondino Pratt, son of Mrs. Bennett-Wright.  Mr. Pratt was alleged to be the shooter of Kirk Ferguson.  The man who was held for the Bennett Wright murder is a friend of Mr. Ferguson, the first man killed. Revenge is the said to be the motives of all the killings.

Now family members are saying that Mrs. Wright-Bennett’s death is not going to “go like that”.

The response of the police and the society as a whole has been criticized as ineffective.  The police have a hard job to do without the co-operation of the community.  But there is great distrust of the police.  We have had prayer vigils and police investigations.  But there just seems like there is something more fundamental that can be done.

At least two other people are wanted in the Fox Hill area for robbery and killing.  They are on police bulletins as armed and dangerous.  Another family thinks that it will be the target of the same kind of revenge killing.

This Senator has asked the constituency in which he is a candidate for Parliament to stay calm and co-operate with the police.  For the moment that is all we can do.  But I remain convinced that if we start the remedial programmes that we need in order to address this menace in the long term, we can save the next generation from this kind of useless slaughter.

This week we had 44,486 hits on this site for the week ending 9 March 2002 at midnight.  That makes a total of 50,742 hits on this site for the month of March.  Thanks for reading and please keep reading.

This Senator joins the Fox Hill community at a candlelight vigil top photo by Omar Barr / Tribune; relatives at the vigil in this Ed Bethel / Bahama Journal photo at left.

by Kendal Demeritte

Funk’s Short Corner 

To FNM Senator Tanya McCartney 
From the corner: “For thinking like dat”
Let the generosity of a kindred heart palpitate through the political veins of selfishness and bias.  So did senator McCartney when she offered to assist the M.P for St. Cecilia the Hon. Cynthia ‘Mother’ Pratt, in her fire relief efforts to restore the recently destroyed constituency headquarters, that also housed the community center, which was established to assist all; especially students in extra-curricular activities such as homework and computer lessons.  This corner is not surprised and believes that this senator’s intentions were purely genuine.  However this corner is not shocked that she can think like dat.  All one has to do is to follow her bloodline and two things will stand out. She is a daughter of one of the Bahamas’ finest human beings, businessman and philanthropist of sorts Mr. Alphonso ‘Bugaloo’ Elliott who also thinks like dat.  She must have been born a PLP…for thinking ALL THE WAY… LIKE DAT. 


The Three Stooges Saga 
To the Dream Team - Tommy ‘Larry’ Turnquest, Hubert ‘Moe’ Ingraham and Dion ‘Curly Joe’ Foulkes 
This corner took a back track down memory lane two days after the referendum and the things that came to mind especially while listening to Larry and the rest of the gang trying passionately and almost convincingly to distance themselves from Moe, on the national airways.  As I recall my weekends spent in the Nassau theatre, the Savoy theatre, The Capitol theatre, and the infamous Cinema theatre to watch the famous comedy series The Three Stooges, I started to search my mind try and remember if in any of those series Larry and Curly Joe was successful in trying to outsmart Moe.  It suddenly came to my mind that somewhere in one of those series in 1959 Larry and Curly Joe were successful in outsmarting Moe, but that was only because the series had included by extension two other fellows; world famous comedians Abbot and Costello.  Could this mean something by interpretation? 

On Saturday March 2nd at the opening of a particular FNM headquarters on Soldier Road standing on the podium all together and all as one were Larry, Curly Joe and would you believe Abbot and Costello… Was that the beginning of the end for Moe?  STAY TUNED because Moe is now three and one.

12th Review of the Judiciary
11th Review of the Judiciary
Mitchell Address to Senate: Why the PM is the way he is
Mitchell speech to PLP Convention 2000
Pindling & Me - A personal retrospective on the life and times of Sir Lynden by Fred Mitchell
Address to the Senate Budget Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to the Senate Clifton Cay Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to PLP Leadership meeting in Exuma / Haitian Issue

Address of Sean McWeeney / Pindling  funeral
Gilbert Morris on OECD Blacklist
Fred Mitchell Antioch College speech
The funeral coverage

For a photo essay on the funeral of Archdeacon William Thompson. Click here.

Professor Gilbert Morris on the country's blacklisting  Coverage of Sir Lynden's death & funeral


Site Links
The PLP Position on Clifton Canadian contacts Reg & Kit's Bahamas Links Bahamian Cycling News Links to Bahamians on the web Politics Forum Harbour Island Site



    The headlines on Saturday’s paper all led with the murder charges preferred against the persons for the murders in Fox Hill.  Bradley Ferguson (left), the brother of the murdered Kirk Ferguson (See Note from the Publisher) was charged with killing Rosemary Bennett-Wright and her son Jakeel.  The alleged shooter is 33 years old.  Ronny Ronald Joseph (centre) was charged with the murder of Kirk Ferguson.  He is 25 years old.  Bernard Lewis (right), 21 years old, is charged with aiding and abetting in the murder of Kirk Ferguson.  Bradley Ferguson proclaimed his innocence.  According to The Tribune he shouted in court: “You all should be ashamed of yourselves.  I could do a better job than you.  You all charging the wrong person.  The killer is still out there… I never killed anyone in my life.  I did go to their house on Monday to tell them to turn the boy over to the police, but I did not kill them.  They were like family to me.”
    As for the alleged shooter of Kirk Ferguson, he too said he was innocent.  According to The Tribune, he said: “The guys who did this are still at large.  They say they are charging us with murder but we didn’t do this.  We turned ourselves in to them [the police] to tell them that we didn’t do anything.  We wanted to help them find the people who did this.”  While these arrests have taken the edge off the immediate tension in Fox Hill, we hope that these are not arrests and charges for pubic relations reasons and these people are actually correct in their assertions.  Tribune photos by Felipé Major.

    Like a thief in the night, Hubert Ingraham the Prime Minister sneaked into town on Wednesday 6 March 2002, back from attempting to pump up his international image at the Commonwealth Heads of Government conference, representing Bahamians of whom he said last week that he was “ashamed”. What was that?  Not so fast, said Mr. Ingraham.  HE NOW CLAIMS HE DID NOT SAY IT.  That of course is bull.  We understood exactly what he said.  He said he was ashamed.  We knew he meant that he was ashamed of the Bahamian people for what they did by voting no in the referendum.
    But anyway, here’s what the clown had to say in his defence: “I think that my statement was misinterpreted, I said I was ashamed of what we had done, I didn’t say I was ashamed of The Bahamas.  I didn’t say I was shamed of the Bahamian people.  I spent my entire life as Prime Minister of The Bahamas trying to cause Bahamians to hold up their head up in The Bahamas and elsewhere in the world from the shame which we had been put to by the corrupt and crooked ways of the previous government.”
    Now talk about red herrings.  The Prime Minister must take us for fools.  Anyway, as we said he sneaked into town on an American Eagle flight (notice not Bahamasair) and it was almost midnight, in the dead of night.  And the only one there to greet him it seems, grinning like a Cheshire cat, the two of them, was Mr. Ingraham and the man whom Nicki Kelly calls Mr. Ingraham’s puppet, Tommy Turnquest.  The Bahama Journal showed the two of them together.

    A fellow can really play stupid when he wants to.  That’s the continuous story of Hubert Ingraham.  He speaks out of one side of his mouth about integrity and commitment to the rules, but he breaks each and every rule whenever it suits his purpose.  And that is the story with why he won’t resign.  He knows that the conventions of the constitution demand that when he and his government have lost an important vote like the five questions on the referendum he has in fact had a vote of no confidence made in his Government.  There is no choice but to resign.
    This is the Prime Minister's specious explanation when he returned from Australia as to why he won’t resign:  “Despite all these calls for me to resign, I will say that I have no plans to resign.  I heard about one hundred persons were whipped into a frenzy, who were organized and orchestrated to make these calls for me to go.  You know, one hundred persons is a lot of people – but many more elected me.”
    Pinch me! Pinch me!  We must be dreaming.  This can’t be the same man who wanted the last Prime Minister to resign when the commission inquiry condemned the last Government.  He knows what the convention is.  It has nothing to do with how many people called for your resignation.  He must go because the rule says he must go.  But now he has bastardized the system again.  This is not surprising.  But hopefully, he will be gone in short order by means of the general election which he should call and stop dragging this country through this long process while our economy is on hold. The fact is that the delay in calling the election has caused untold damage to the economy.  No one will deal with this Government until the election has been decided.

    In the Lion in Winter, Queen Eleanor says to her husband at the end of one of their epic personal battles: “How from where we started did we get to this?” And well that might be the line that Hubert Ingraham and his colleagues must be asking at the end of their so called conclave at the auditorium of the Holy Trinity Church in Stapledon Gardens on Saturday 9 March. The conclave was ostensibly called to approve the platform for the party.   Generals from each constituency, council members and candidates, along with officers of the party gathered at the auditorium.
    The whole thing was a bitter anti-climax.  Hubert Ingraham swept in to grim faces and bitter words under their breaths.  He announced that he was turning over the running of the party to Tommy Turnquest, the Leader designate.  He left to catcalls and at least one member from Grand Bahama shouting out: “Carry your a.. and don’t come back”.  Mr. Ingraham proposes to address the nation tonight.  The deal is he will announce that he has turned over the reins of the party to Mr. Turnquest.  Then he will say what the date of the general elections is going to be.  Some say he will announce the immediate dissolution of parliament and announce 4th April election date.  Others say he will prorogue the House to avoid the scheduled meeting for Monday 11 March.  He will then give people a few days to register and then announce the dissolution later in the week.
    Algernon Allen is now on the rise in the FNM again.  He has been roped in to be Deputy Co-ordinator of the campaign.  And it appears that a behind the scenes deal will have him emerging as Deputy Leader of the FNM.  Frank Watson, the now Deputy Prime Minister and Dion Foulkes, the now Deputy Leader Designate were said to have been treated as pariahs.  Everyone is asking for them to go.  In five years then, Hubert Ingraham has managed to fritter away a whole party’s popularity.  He has come to a bitter end.  In a way, whatever he does now is totally and absolutely irrelevant.  One police officer stationed at the conclave said that as Mr. Ingraham left the site, he told the FNMs: “I met this party in disarray and I am now leaving it in disarray.

    The PLP’s lawyers are already examining whether or not the plan of Mr. Ingraham to continue as Prime Minister while turning over the Leadership of the FNM to Tommy Turnquest is constitutionally acceptable.  A quick reading of Article 73 of the Constitution says:
    “Whenever there shall be occasion for the appointment of a Prime Minister, the Governor General shall appoint as Prime Minister the member of the House of Assembly who is the Leader of the party which commands the support of the majority of member of that House...”
    Question: is that person now still Mr. Ingraham?  It appears that it is Tommy Turnquest, even though Mr. Ingraham has not formally tendered his resignation to the Governor General.  Is this not a constructive resignation in the sense that he would have stepped down as Leader of the Party?  In those circumstances is the Governor General not bound to revoke his appointment as Prime Minister and appoint Tommy Turnquest as the Prime Minister?

    Some folks were scandalized at what the FNM is attempting to do by commissioning a song that is an ad on the radio appealing to a cult of personality around Tommy Turnquest.  The song sings about Tommy T and Me. Gee.  We thought these fellows came to office to get rid of the cult of personality but now with Ingraham having reinforced it, they want us to let go the puppet master for the cult of personality around the puppet.  It is offensive.  Heaven help us!

    The Tribune’s columnist Nicki Kelly spoke up about the Prime Minister and his remarks about Bahamians.  She like the rest of us heard and saw exactly what he said and we knew what he meant by what he said.  No amount of backpedalling is going to get him out of this.
    Said Ms. Kelly in her column Tuesday 5 March: “… But rather than recognize the folly of his ways, he is still bent on shifting blame. Asked by a reporter what he would say at the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting (CHOGM), should he be questioned on the results, his response left not doubt about his true feelings.  ‘Don’t ask me whether I’m proud of what The Bahamas did... I hold my head down in shame.  I am ashamed.’ ” As they say: q.e.d.


    Perry Christie called the troops together at a rally of the Progressive Liberal Party on Wednesday 6 March at Windsor Park.  He thanked the people for their support in the referendum vote, and said that the Progressive Liberal Party would begin to launch its campaign on the following day.  He said that PLPs ought to prepare to attend meetings, campaign and even march in support of the cause.  The meeting was attended by some three to four thousand people.  Mr. Christie said: “Tell him [the Prime Minister] ring the bell; ring it anytime he wishes, because you the people are ready to make your choice.  You have already demonstrated that you are prepared to listen carefully and give yourself time to understand… I am confident, that you will see in the PLP, in the leadership of the PLP and the leader of the PLP that we are the best choice for The Bahamas today.  We are prepared for government; we are ready for government and our hope is that you are ready for us.”  Ron Pinder, PLP Marathon candidate, Shane Gibson, PLP Golden Gates candidate, and Leader Perry Christie were profiled in a series of shots in their Friday 8 March edition. Tribune photos by Omar Barr.

Back To The Top

    Allardyce Scott Fitzgerald is a long time and respected member of the Free National Movement.  She is a former officer of the FNM.  She served during the first term of the Prime Minister as Treasurer. She is also a former Chair of the FNM Constituency Association in Mr. Allen’s Marathon constituency.  She does not support what happened in the Leader designate and Deputy Leader designate elections of 2001.  She has been in a quandary as to how to approach the matter.  Now the press has revealed that a carefully worded request by Mrs. Scott Fitzgerald has been sent to the Leader designate of the FNM Tommy Turnquest asking for the elections to be held again in order to determine who the Leader of the FNM will be to succeed Hubert Ingraham.
    According to the Bahama Journal, Mrs. Scott Fitzgerald wants the Leader Designate Tommy Turnquest to use his persuasive powers to convince the party’s chairman to call a special meeting of the Central Council immediately.  The purpose of the meeting would be to accommodate a motion to hold an election for leader of the Free National Movement.  The FNM is in conclave as we speak and Mrs. Scott Fitzgerald thought that the conclave would be an appropriate venue to revisit the question of Leader of the FNM.   Mrs. Scott Fitzgerald asked Mr. Turnquest to “take advantage of this ideal opportunity to unite the party through the election of the leader of the Free National Movement.  Failing this, I strongly believe that it will not be possible for the FNM to win the next general election, but be cast back into opposition, which would be a tragedy as I do believe as a united party we would have the support of the majority of the Bahamian people.”
    Mr. Turnquest told the Bahama Journal that he was not prepared to revisit the issue.  He said: “It would be very divisive to the party. The party will be all inclusive to ensure that everyone plays a meaningful role, but we are not prepared to do that [revisit the leadership question].  Tennyson Wells FNM dissident MP, who is running in Bamboo Town as an independent said that he thought the letter was carefully orchestrated and directed.  He claimed in the Bahama Journal of Thursday 7 March that Algernon Allen, the Marathon MP, was behind it and was seeking to establish a basis for challenging the leadership again in the FNM.  As for Mr. Allen, he told the Journal that he needed more time to read the letter and get in contact with some people.  They said they never heard from him again.

    Every day that the Lord brings sunshine or rain, there is a call from some member or supporter of the FNM.  They are incensed at Hubert Ingraham and how he has brought his party to rack or ruin.  And the thing that disturbs them is that it appears that Mr. Ingraham is unrepentant.  Each time, you think he will stop his boorish behaviour, it gets worse.  The PLP‘s best campaigner is Mr. Ingraham, because each time he opens his mouth he cheeses off a few more voters.  It is clear as day for anyone to see that calling the referendum vote so close to the general election was a political miscalculation of huge proportions.  It was plainly and simply a stupid thing to have done.  Yet he and they can’t admit it.  Instead, you have the various puppets and spin doctors all around town.
    The spin doctors' first line of defence was that the vote on the referendum meant nothing for the FNM.  It was simply a vote on the issues not against the party.  This after spending half a million dollars campaigning up and down the country and saying that whoever won the referendum vote would win the general election.  Then the puppet ministers in the Cabinet were busy saying that the thirty per cent of the people who did not go to the polls were all FNM voters. Any amateur statistician will tell you that the safest projection of those who stayed at home is the same break down between yes and no as those who went out to vote.  That means that of the 30 percent who did not show up, sixty per cent of them would likely vote no as well.  So that didn't wash.  Then Zhivargo Laing, the Minister who is a born again Christian, got up and said that the vote was not a vote against Hubert Ingraham.  Where does Mr. Ingraham find these people?
    The most remarkable thing of all though were the statements of Tommy Turnquest at a press conference that were clearly distancing himself from the stupid remarks of the Prime Minister during the campaign. Whatever happens, the FNM seems shell shocked and they are fetching towards the election.  Mr. Ingraham simply can't decide when to call it.  What we do know is that the deadline for it to be called is 9 April when the mandate of the present Parliament runs out.  Then we hope the FNM’s time will be up and the PLP will be returned to office, having learned the lessons of being out in the wilderness and the dark.

    We would like without too much comment to show you what Tommy T (as it seems to us that the FNM now wants to call him) had to say about the results of the referendum and its implications for the FNM.  It seems to us that he was anxious to stop the bloodletting that began when Hubert Ingraham stupidly took on the church in the referendum and lost.
    Here is Tommy T in his own words:
    “In the course of this exercise, Bahamian voters did not accept the proposals put to them to amend our constitution.  This was their democratic right.  We accept these democratic expressions.  It is left for those of us who lead to assess fully the reasons for their doing so, particularly as it appears clear that they did so across party lines.
    “In the course of this exercise, Bahamians of all persuasions indicated a variety of views on the several proposed constitutional amendments.  Such differences are a part of the human experience.
    “I note that there were differences among church leaders and, indeed among some church leaders and the Government.  I do not wish these differences to be misunderstood.  Once those who disagree respect each other, such disagreement is certainly acceptable and often assists in the clarification of issues.
    “The future development of our nation is inextricably tied to the work and role of the church, just as it is to the work and role of the government.  The church and the family are the major vehicles for providing moral instructions for the nation.
    “As we go forward, it is my intention to seek effective means of communicating and consulting with the church and with other interest groups in the society in all matters of national importance.”
    Now talk about eating humble pie.  I wonder if it is a little too late.

    Samuel ‘Ninety’ Knowles, a drug man who is a popular folk hero in the western district of New Providence is still in jail awaiting the result of a bail application by his lawyers Philip ‘Brave’ Davis and Roger Minnis.  The Judge Jon Isaacs granted bail on 6 February when the original charge on which he was to be extradited was thrown out by Mr. Justice Isaacs.  Furious Government lawyers, spurred on by the Americans had Mr. Knowles re-arrested two days later.  The Government made up a story that the passport was lost and so he could not be released the day after the original release order.  But the real story most people think is that they were biding for time to get new charges in order.  They did that and rearrested him as soon as he made bail.  Now his lawyers are before the same Judge asking for bail again.  Mr. Isaacs has said he will decide by Monday 11 March.

    Marlon Johnson, executive director of Safe Bahamas, a non governmental anti-crime organization, issued a statement on Thursday 7 March in response to the killings in Fox Hill.  Mr. Johnson said it is time for us to take back our communities.  Mr. Johnson added: “We ask all Bahamians and Bahamian residents to look to get involved with Safe Bahamas in fighting crime – by sharing information and working with the police force, by volunteering your time and your talents to the civic organizations which are working mightily to build strong neighbourhoods.”
    This Senator agrees.  Over the past week, I spent a lot of time in the company of police officers and community leaders dealing with crime issues.  I am convinced that our environment and the way we raise the kids in this country leave much to be desired.  That is what has bred all of this, and we must take back these communities from hoodlums.  But the problem is that people are so seduced by material things.  The police say the youngsters are raised by televisions because their mothers are out to work.  The fathers are no where around.  When various murders and shootings and robbery take place in Nassau, many times when you speak to the perpetrators they will tell you lines that they heard on some music video or in some movie of Black American gangster life.

Back To The Top

    Jerome Fitzgerald, who is the CEO of RND Cinemas, provided us with a detailed response to our story last week about RND. Our story was based on a report in The Tribune.  The thrust of Mr. Fitzgerald’s response and explanation is that The Tribune’s story is inaccurate and statements attributed to him were not correct.  Like many companies who are listed on BISX, RND believes that the true share value is not reflected in the price of the stock on the exchange.  He argues that there has been in fact increased revenue for RND, plans for expansion and increased value for the company.  The full explanation by Mr. Fitzgerald:
    "For a better understanding of the Company, shareholders should read all Annual Reports and, if possible, attend the Annual Meetings or simply call me with any questions.
    I will point out the following from our 2001 Annual Report: -
        1. Revenue increased by 26% to $6,141,728;
        2. Income from operations increased by 36% to $940,292 (the highest in the Company's history);
        3. Income before depreciation and amortization of goodwill increased by 50% to $842,407;
        4. The Company's total assets increased by $6,606,982 to $22,199,288, an increase of 42%;
        5. Liabilities increased by 45% to $8,197,818;
        6. The Net Asset Value of the Company increased by $4,056,950 to $14,002,470, a 40% increase; and
        7. Our Net Asset Value stood at 1.59 times its underlying share capital base.
    What this means is that if we were to sell all of our assets and discharge all liabilities, there would be $1.59 for each shareholder.  This, of course, does not even take into account the sale of our interest in our cinema business in Nassau, Freeport and Abaco or our interest in the Gold's Gym franchise for the Caribbean and our operation in Nassau and Grand Cayman.  This point alone supports the fact that our shares are traded below value and the issue of solvency is in fact a non issue.
    As you can see, the current share price in no way reflects the value of the Company.  In fact, last year less than 1% of our shares traded and our shares went from $2.50 to 50 cents in part because some of our shareholders don't understand and have not taken the time to read the Annual Reports, view our financials on our website or attend the Annual Meetings, all of which cost the Company approximately $50,000 annually.
    Therefore, we have persons, companies and brokerage houses who understand this and are thriving off the panic, which is essentially fuelled by ignorance on the part of some of our shareholders.
    Further, in the last two weeks, two trades or 1,200 shares each moved our shares from 85 cents to 50 cents.  When we were first listed in February of 2001, in one day alone our shares fell by 50 cents with the sale of 100 shares, and during that two-week period, our share price dropped by $1.00 with the sale of only 1,100 shares.  In that two weeks alone, $10 million was taken off our market cap for no real reason.  Does the current share price reflect the value of the company?  Of course not!  And the financial houses know it.  RND is not the only victim of BISX.  Ninety percent of the other public companies had similar experiences although ours has been the one subject to the most volatility.
    Our statements are released quarterly in the newspapers and can also be seen on our web page at"

    In the past week, Leader of the Opposition has met with senior executives of the Atlantis Hotel at Paradise Island with a view to making clear the policy of the PLP as far as relations with the resort.  The talks were described as on policy only, cordial but frank.  He also met with the owners of the Breezes Resort on Cable Beach in Nassau and the owners of Bahamas Food Services, successors to Island Seafood.

    Last week it was reported that the Prime Minister had rehired retired permanent secretary M. Teresa Butler as a special advisor.  The latest word is that he is also set to offer her the position as non resident ambassador for The Bahamas to Spain.  We want to make it clear that the issue here is not Ms. Butler.  The issue is the Prime Minister's abuse of the system by offering appointments that will bind a future administration, something which he pledged not to do.

    Businessman Basil Neymour is to be the sponsor of the 2002 Carifta Games to be held at Nassau’s Queen Elizabeth Stadium from 30th March to 1st April.  The games are the premier junior games of the Caribbean region.  All countries of Caricom participate. Mr. Neymour is a well known businessman, a former candidate for the FNM and then a high profile PLP supporter and candidate.
    Of late, Mr. Neymour has been a contractor for the building of roads throughout the islands.  Born in 1942 in Fresh Creek, Andros he lost his mother at 2 and his father at 8.  So Mr. Neymour says that he is giving back to the country on behalf of young people what the country gave to him.  That’s what he told The Tribune in its Tuesday 5 March edition.  Mr. Neymour said in a story by Brent Stubbs: “Sports and church was where I found comfort because that was where people saw what my needs were.
    “I believe that sports can help to discipline children and show them the right way, not just using the rod.  Many times, we as adults neglect guiding our children who feel unwanted and unneeded.
    “But my experience with children [is that] they are like little puppy dogs and kittens.  When you pet them, they will do almost anything for you.  I get the benefit from a smile on a kid’s face when I do something.”
    We want to thank Mr. Neymour for his contribution. Freeport News photo.

    The Bridal Show is taking place as we write this piece.  The show that is put together by Tommy Stubbs is always a great hit with young couples.  But this year it’s a special one.  Kenyatta Gilbert and Cohen Johnson, pictured by The Tribune in its Bridal Supplement of Friday 8 March, are to marry at the show.  There is a special story to them.  They were engaged at a previous bridal show but their original wedding date could not come off because Mr. Johnson was diagnosed with colon cancer and had to be operated on right away.  It is great story.
    Said Mr. Johnson about his wife to be: “The way she dealt with my illness has tremendously changed my way of thinking about her.  For the mere fact that she stuck throughout all with me and was very supportive.  Through the whole experience she was there for me.  I've had two cousins die recently from cancer.  They were not much older than I am.  It bothers me sometimes.  I am fortunate to be alive.”
    Said Kenyatta, the soon to be Mrs. Johnson: “You could be fine today, and tomorrow you could find something’s wrong with you or you can’t function the way you did the day before.  Tomorrow is promised to no one.  We could have gotten married and I find out a week, a month, later, a year later.  What am I going to do then? Jump up and leave?  That’s not going to correct the problem.” We wish them well.

    Someone at ZNS needs to get with it, and solve the puzzle of their fancy new telephone service.  When you call there, you can never get any live person on the telephone.  This is supposed to be a news organization.  What good is it if you can’t get to the news operation?  This columnist tried on several occasions on the day we were involved in a court case on Monday 25 February 2002, two days before the referendum.  We tried to get the General Manager, the Deputy General Manger, and the Sales Director; someone on the phone, but in each case all we got was the voice mail.  And not one of them returned the call.  On Friday 8 March 2002, we tried to get the newsroom.  Instead of dialling their direct number, we dialled the general number and punched the number 2 as instructed by the voice messenger and then got a ring, and message that said that the person at the extension could not come to the phone and did not subscribe to the voice messaging service, then hung up.  It seems that ZNS needs to get its act together. The staff has made complaints to them to no avail.

Crisis Uncovered For Trust Workers -
    Official letters from a department of Government have been circulating to many trust companies in The Bahamas advising them to "...prepare to wind up" their business in The Bahamas by June, News From Grand Bahama has been reliably informed.  If this is allowed to happen, industry sources say the government of The Bahamas could lose as much as 200 million dollars in revenues to the Public Treasury and another 75 to 100 million dollars in other revenues generated by this sector.
    This new information suggests that the FNM Government is preparing again to abandon the sovereign interests of The Bahamas under severe pressure from foreign powers.   Trust companies in The Bahamas account for some of the highest-paid Bahamian jobs, but no Government agency is letting people know that the sector is about to be turned upside down.  By the time dismissal notices start to be received by trust employees, it will be too late.  Late word estimates that more than two thousand Bahamians could be affected by a shutdown of trust companies in The Bahamas.  We call on the Minister of Finance to immediately address this issue and to say why he has not accounted to the Bahamian people.

Community Unrest Stings Whampoa -
    There is major dissension in the management ranks at Hutchison Whampoa's operations in Freeport, with News From Grand Bahama reliably informed that the company's top man has been recalled by head office because poor community relations.  The manager who held overall responsibility for the Freeport Container Port, the Grand Bahama Airport and the Grand Bahama Harbour was pulled back to company headquarters, ostensibly because of "family medical issues".   Our sources say "Whampoa operates all over the world with a very low and successful profile, but these guys have so upset Bahamians at all levels in Grand Bahama, that the company pulled the top man back to explain himself."
    High-level insiders also report that top Whampoa managers in Honk Kong have identified the Freeport Container Port (FCP) as a major source of the company's profile problem.  "FCP's manager Gary Lemke and his top man Mauricio D'Orfeo have been called on the carpet too and we expect one or both of them to be gone in short order."  The Freeport Container Port has been under fire for wilfully ignoring Bahamian labour laws and recently attempting to force a local Bahamian engineering firm out of business with unethical practices.
    According to one observer of the international shipping business, "Freeport is just one element of a global strategy for Hutchison Whampoa, and they're certainly not going to let a few heavy handed local managers upset their overall picture... They can't afford to do that."

GB FNMs Subdued After Conclave -
    Sunday breakfast at Geneva's, the local eatery popular with politicos, was a sombre affair 10 March for FNMs who habitually gather for networking and fellowship.   "The question we have to ask ourselves this morning," said one, "is 'Are we prepared to turn the country over to a Tommy Turnquest and a Dion Foulkes?"  After a strained silence, another offered, "His daddy will help him; their fathers will help them and... you have to believe that Sir Orville and Sir Arthur won't let us down."  Grim faces.  Everyone tried to put the best face on a bad situation.  The final word came from one discouraged FNM general who said: "They couldn't even run an election for leadership of the party without all kinds of trouble - allegations of corruption, favouritism and mismanagement - what do you think they'll do if they get to run the country?"

David Thompson, Too Little, Too Late -

   An unusual sight this week as FNM Grand Bahama MP and Ambassador for Investment David Thompson showed up to grandstand at a demonstration of hotel workers against Resorts at Bahamia.   The workers, who are locked in a long struggle against unfair and disrespectful treatment by the Resorts, were incensed:  "Where you been all this time these people have been taking advantage of us?" asked one hotel maid, "how come you just show up now and what you going do about it?"
    We remind Ambassador Thompson of the sentiment expressed by the late Henry Bowen MP that Governments do not demonstrate, they legislate.  We suggest to the ambassador that he immediately summon the Resorts principal owner Buddemeyer, his senior Bahamian manager Donald Archer and the rest of the foreign executive team to set things right. Freeport News photo.

Bad Mouth? No More Freebies -
    Meanwhile, word is that Resorts at Bahamia executives have received orders that local MPs (all FNMs) must now pay for all meals and are not to be given any more free rooms.  "They want to show off and bad mouth us after taking our stuff? No way Jose!"

No Respite For Election From Resorts -
    In another development, we have reported on numerous occasions that expatriate chef Greg Carroll (not a Bahamian Carroll) was to be brought as the first in a line of foreigners set to replace the chefs at Resorts at Bahamia.  Reports now confirm that Mr. Carroll has been given a work permit and will soon take over.
    Reports also confirm that executive vice president at Resorts, Thomas 'The Knife' Rosati has been given a new 1-year work permit, much to the dismay of the top Bahamian manager who was displaced.  Sources say that Resorts has now decided to renege on its agreement with the FNM to hold off some of the more divisive personnel moves until after the General Election.  According to our informant: "These people just don't care."

FNM Trial Balloon -
    General Legal Counsel to the Grand Bahama Port Authority and former President of The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce Carey Leonard caused a stir in Freeport this past week when he suggested that the country should abandon our currency in favour of the US dollar.  Mr. Leonard spoke at a local Rotary club.  With the anti-Bahamian mood of the FNM Government, many wondered whether this was a trial balloon put out by the FNM.

17th March, 2002
This Week on
Bahamas Government Website Neville Wisdom / PLP Delaporte
John Carey / PLP Carmichael... Melanie Griffin / PLP Yamacraw
Alfred Sears / PLP Fort Charlotte... Bahamians First.Com / PLP Grand Bahama
Shane Gibson / Golden Gates...  Bradley Roberts / PLP Grants Town...
Click on a heading to go to that story; press ctrl+home to return to the top of the page.



On Saturday 9 March, the Free National Movement held a conclave of sorts to mend fences.  All those who were left in the party as candidates, members of parliament, senators and officers gathered there to make peace.  At the start of the show came Hubert Ingraham, the Prime Minister who passed over the torch of leadership in the FNM to Tommy Turnquest.  We reported on the site last week that having done that Mr. Ingraham left the proceedings.  Someone shouted as he left: “carry your ass and don’t come back”

The talk is now that the FNM has their party back.  They have expelled the PLP usurper who gave them the victory in 1992 and in 1997.  Turnquest the Senior is going to live out his fantasy of becoming Prime Minister by trying to get his son elected Prime Minister.  Emphasis on trying.

The only problem is that they immediately ran into a firestorm of criticism over the whole thing when Paul Adderley, the former Attorney General pointed out to them that if indeed Mr. Ingraham had given up the leadership of the FNM, then a close reading of Article 73 of the constitution would show that he can no longer be prime minister.  Not so fast said Carl Bethel, the man who they call the Attorney General.  Mr. Bethel said that the question was moot, since the passing of the leadership was only ceremonial.  That’s what you call ex post facto patch up work.

Well let them pull my other leg.

The point of this piece as we report and comment on the week’s activities is that since that time Hubert Ingraham can’t be seen in public and can’t be heard in public.  He has become like the lost man.

When the Church of God had its first official day of convention, there was no Prime Minister.  Turnquest Jr. and Turnquest Sr. showed up.  We report on that below.  No one has seen or heard from Mr. Ingraham since the passing of the torch.  And now that Algernon Allen is fully back in the fold (we report on that below), Mr. Ingraham who had spent a whole Cabinet meeting insisting that Mr. Allen not have anything to do with the campaign, will now himself certainly not have anything to do with the FNM’s campaign.  Or will he?  The answer is blowing in the wind.

This week, welcome PLP Neville Wisdom as a new link to our website. He may be reached through the permanent links below the headlines above, or you may click here.  Welcome.

This week we had 44,508 hits on this site for the week ending 16 March 2002 at midnight.  That makes a total of 95,279 hits on this site for the month of March.  Thanks for reading and please keep reading.

photo by Nello Lambert, taken at 'Montrose' - Christmas 2000

by Kendal Demeritte

Ahhhh my dear friends… The Corner is not feeling well this week after witnessing that debacle on R.M. Bailey Park the other night.  I just can’t get my thoughts together. What has happened in politics and the value of it in this country?! 

Pray tell me…when honorable men hold a position of principle and Christian values and flush them down the John.  Tell me my friends what is the Great reward?  Certainly I am not righteous, and I hold no man otherwise.  But the field of principle is CLEAR to all.  In my time I have seen many transformations and many transitions but now again it is clear (As in the Choice). 

If you are at odds with the FNM for speaking the truth and speaking your conscience, you are now compelled to say that you LIED and you apologize if you wish to again be apart of them. Can you imagine this happening in this 21st century Bahamas?

Quick note to Little Tommy
Don’t you know better than to challenge Perry Christie in a debate, or for anything in that manner?  Your father tried in 1977 and was denied, you truly think you will do… In 2002?  You are STILL… Jr.!!

Tommy’s Term Quest Will Be DENIED!
The F.N.M says that there are 101 reasons not to vote P.L.P no doubt they calculated that by long division.  I am going to give your three simple additions why not to vote F.N.M…

Foulkes + Turnquest + Watson - Ingraham?! ! … And then dial the F.B.I!

12th Review of the Judiciary
11th Review of the Judiciary
Mitchell Address to Senate: Why the PM is the way he is
Mitchell speech to PLP Convention 2000
Pindling & Me - A personal retrospective on the life and times of Sir Lynden by Fred Mitchell
Address to the Senate Budget Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to the Senate Clifton Cay Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to PLP Leadership meeting in Exuma / Haitian Issue

Address of Sean McWeeney / Pindling  funeral
Gilbert Morris on OECD Blacklist
Fred Mitchell Antioch College speech
The funeral coverage

For a photo essay on the funeral of Archdeacon William Thompson. Click here.

Professor Gilbert Morris on the country's blacklisting  Coverage of Sir Lynden's death & funeral


Site Links
The PLP Position on Clifton Canadian contacts Reg & Kit's Bahamas Links Bahamian Cycling News Links to Bahamians on the web Politics Forum Harbour Island Site


    The newspaper headline of on Friday 15 March, the ides of March, said it all: “ALLEN READY TO SERVE”.  Algernon Allen, the former Minister of Housing, was shown with his arms spread wide at the FNM’s rally and with supporters on either side, walking up to the podium at the Free National Movement’s campaign launching rally on Thursday 14 March.  For many it was yet another incredible and confounding chapter in the life of one of the country’s most charismatic yet at the same time mercurial politicians.
    The public on the one hand seemed confounded and bemused by what seemed a political about face.  Some said on the radio talk shows that he ought to have struck out on his own, that he had lost credibility by going back.  On the talk show on Thursday 14 March, Mr. Allen cited in aid of his going back, the returns of Paul of Adderley in 1972 to the PLP after leading the NDP and the return of Perry Christie to the PLP in 1990 after running as an independent in 1987.  Some thought it was a stretch.
    Mr. Allen was effusive in his praise for Tommy Turnquest, the leader designate of the FNM.  He said: “The political reality is that Tommy Turnquest is the leader of the FNM and he is doing a fine job at it, and as a consequence, he would make a fine Prime Minister whom I would have the pleasure undoubtedly to support.” When confronted with the words he had said after the 16 August election for FNM leader designate, that the process was corrupted, he backed away from the words.  He said that he made allegations about the process but no allegations about Mr. Turnquest and Mr. Foulkes.  It seemed to him that the referee, as he called the Prime Minister, did not remain neutral.  He did not add that the referee has been himself now been knocked to the sidelines and that undoubtedly that is why he (Mr. Allen) is able now to come to centre stage.  One thing is clear; a lot of stock is put in Mr. Allen’s ability to rally the faithful.  He is known as a people’s man, and as a street fighter.  The campaign has already taken on a tougher meaner look.  We shall see.

People could hardly believe the headline.  Algernon Allen in his own words speaking at the R.M. Bailey Park on Thursday 14 March at the FNM ‘All Together’ rally:  “I forgive all real and perceived wrongs, and I ask you to forgive me because I did some things too.”

    Algernon Allen has confounded the critics and returned to the centre of the Free National Movement, actively involved in planning their campaign strategy.  He is the only one who they believe has the grass roots touch.  We thought you would like to know what Mr. Allen had to say about the new team in his own words.  These are the words of Mr. Allen reported by The Tribune.  Mr. Allen called the ZNS Show ‘Immediate Response’ that had Tommy Turnquest on as its guest on ZNS on Monday 11 March 2002.  These are some of his words:
    “He is the leader of the Free National Movement we accept him as such.  We take all our commands from him and we are going forward under his leadership.  I congratulate him because he has brought a healing balm within a miraculous period of time.  He’s reached across the gaps in the organization, the divide, and brought together all of us within the FNM so we can maximize our political efforts to achieve what we know ought to be the goal of all of us, namely to win our third term of governance, to continue the wonderful work as servants of the Bahamian people, making life better…
    “I wanted to feel the sprit of the man.  I wanted to feel his heart.  I wrestled and we rowed and we laughed. [Mr. Turnquest is a man of heart.] That’s the only type of man I will let lead Algernon Allen any more in this nation.  A man of absolute heart, a man of love and a man of caring.  Thank you so very much for being brave, for being compassionate, and for being visionary in this approach you are taking, continue my dear friend.”
    You may click here to see what Mr. Allen said in August of 2001.

    Nicholas Nuttal, head of BREEF, the environmental group that is involved in public education on marine species, was in the press this week announcing that the conch and grouper stocks were in danger of crashing within a few short years.  He said that the grouper stocks were dangerously over fished and the same for the conch fishery.  He proposed that there be a closed season for both groupers and conch and that the no catch areas be extended.  He said that if this were not agreed to, then within four years both resources might be over fished to the point of no return and the species would simply disappear because they would no longer have the ability to reproduce themselves.  This is a serious matter.  But it does clash with some opinions within the Department of Fisheries that believe that the stocks are more than adequate and that there is no danger of over fishing.  We err on the side of caution and urge the next political directorate to move in favour of extending a closed season for both resources and extending the no catch rates of the fishery.

    After the shooting up and comnbrucktion in Fox Hill two weeks ago, there is now more death and destruction.  We reported on this three weeks ago (you may click here for the story) that a man had shot his estranged girlfriend then turned the gun on himself.  Well it has happened again.  Tim’s Refrigeration on Haven Avenue was the scene of the mayhem this time.  A man, Stanley Brown, released from prison after serving half of a rape sentence last year, could not get over the fact that his girlfriend Kim Adderley was going to marry another, the father of her four children.  So on Tuesday 12 March, he held her hostage at her workplace, the same place that he worked and then shot her and her cousin Quentin Gibson.  Both died instantly.  He then turned the gun on himself.
    The scenes of grief played out across the newspaper in words and in pictures. The experts are trying to figure out what is going on here.  No doubt there is an element of copy cat now.  And the police report that since the two killings and suicides, women are reporting more than ever any threat by men against them and the police are taking the matters seriously.  For example, it is reported that on Thursday 14 March, the panic button at Commonwealth Bank was sounded, the bank closed down, when a woman came up to the bank with a note saying that her boyfriend was out in the parking lot threatening to kill her.  The society is on edge already over elections and the situation in Fox Hill where the funeral of Rosemary Bennett-Wright and her son Jakeel killed in a double murder two weeks ago took place on Saturday 16 March at Macedonia Baptist Church in Fox Hill.
    This is really madness.  We say again there are plenty of women in the world.  If the person doesn’t want you go find another.  That’s it.  And if you want to kill someone, go kill yourself but leave others alone.  The experts say it is really a sickness, and certainly when one hears the profile of the shooter in this case, you get that impression.  This is a man who just served time for rape.  He looks as if he got overly attached to someone who had an ongoing relationship with someone else.  There was a to and fro in the press over whether he was a stalker or not.  Her family said he was.  His friends say that he had an ongoing relationship with her, that she encouraged it notwithstanding the fact that she was about to marry David Rigby next month.  Mr. Rigby had his own drama when he fell to the ground after being called to the scene of the shooting and finding out that his fiancé had died.
    This is the kind of moral rot that the late Archdeacon William Thompson spoke about.  And its seems that the church today barely mentions the need to discipline oneself to the variegated relationships and by this one has a means of avoiding just this kind of tragedy.  It is sick and sad rally.  But perhaps now the police will begin to take domestic violence cases seriously.


    The Royal Bahamas Police Force has a night out at the Senior mess to honour their former colleague now Sir Albert Miller.  Sir Albert who was knighted in the Queen's Honours of January was pictured at the roast with Ambassador Richard Blankenship of the U.S., Commissioner Paul Farqhuarson of the Police in this Tribune photo.  Sir Albert who joined the police force in 1943 and served until his retirement as Deputy Commissioner in 1969 is the first police officer to be knighted.  He is now Co-Chair of the Grand Bahama Port Authority.  Sir Albert acted as Commissioner of Police on five occasions in the colonial police force and would have become Commissioner had he not been on the other political side of the Progressive Liberal Party.  The honour of being the first confirmed Bahamian commissioner then went to Salathiel Thompson.  But as they say when God closes one door he opens another, and Sir Albert is none the worse for the wear.


    Charles Knowles worked in the public service as a consultant on information technology for almost a decade.  He left last month after setting up the new version of The Bahamas Government's website.  You may click here for that site.  He has now moved on to greener pastures at the Commonwealth Bank as Vice-President for Information Technology.  Mr. Knowles is a friend of mine, a neighbour from the Valley in New Providence, a classmate from the old Eastern Junior School and St. Augustine’s College in Fox Hill.  We congratulate him for the new posting. Mr. Knowles is shown with staff in this file photo of the announcement of the Government's website.


    The Prime Minister has set the stage for the general election.  In an address reported on this site as a bulletin last Sunday, he told the nation that the General Election would be held on Thursday 2 May 2002.  The House was prorogued on Monday 11 March to avoid the Prime Minister having to face Bradley Roberts at the scheduled house meeting for that date.
    The Prime Minister called the election to avoid a campaign over lent and Easter time.  This is a heathen trying to give us the impression that he cares about religious sensitivity.  What it more properly speaks to is the fact that he has had a bashing from church leaders over the referendum campaign, and now he and his party are all over the place talking about how they are going to church every Sunday and how they want to stay in touch with church leaders.  The PLP will be working over time to ensure that Mr. Ingraham does not survive the general election.  Good riddance to bad rubbish! Bahama Journal photo of Provost Marshall reading proclamation.

    Ed Fields is the brother-in-law of Tommy Turnquest the man who thinks he is about to become Prime Minister.  Mr. Fields is ebullient and irrepressible.  But here’s one for the books that led him to hole up in his office all day not to emerge.  The foreign executives at Paradise Island were laughing their heads off at him all day, saying that he was giving away lawn mowers for votes.
    The story was revealed by the PLP's candidate for Mount Moriah Keod Smith, where Mr. Fields’ brother-in-law is trying to retain his seat.  Mr. Smith said that he had obtained the information from John Brown of Yellow Elder.  Mr. Brown was at the press conference on Thursday 14 March.  Mr. Fields bought some yard cleaning equipment worth $2,109.59.  Ostensibly it was to help the young man start a cleaning business.  What altruism on his part.  But the young man had another story.  He says that the equipment was purchased on the understanding that in exchange for the equipment he would vote for, work for and support Tommy Turnquest's reelection campaign.
    The Tribune led with the headline: “TURNQUEST BRIBERY DENIED”.   Mr. Fields also revealed that he gave Cynthia Mother Pratt $500 to help rebuild her constituency office.  Throwing that into the mix didn’t help.  He said that money came from the same source as the gift to Mr. Brown and no one would suggest that he was trying to buy Mother Pratt's vote.  Mr. Fields should get real and give me a call.
    Mr. Fields is nice guy but a bit over the top.  He is constantly attacking in the most sarcastic terms every one over his radio show without due regard for decorum.  That's his right.  So many were gleeful to see him finally in the stew.  The word around FNM circles is that he is to be the author a of a dirty tricks campaign, smearing all PLP candidates that the FNM party can manage to with information true or false.  Perhaps this press allegation against him will give Mr. Fields pause.  We doubt it, but he ought to remember when you dig one grave you ought to dig two.  Tribune photo of Koed Smith news conference with landscaping equipment on display.


    Candidates of the PLP and their campaign co-ordinators were invited to a session at the Marriott Crystal Palace on Monday 11 March in order to get their marching orders from PLP Leader Perry Christie.  Mr. Christie published a document that outlined his vision about the campaign.  The vision talks about the strengths of the new PLP.  It also seeks to establish what kind of campaign we are going to run.  Mr. Christie said that he wants everyone to take the high road and not engage in negative advertising.  Of course this is directly opposite Tommy Turnquest’s vision, which is to get nasty and dirty – a sure sign that they are fighting a losing battle.  The campaign will begin in earnest when the House of Assembly is dissolved on 2 April 2002.

Back To The Top

    The Church of God‘s annual convention is an annual rite for each of the party leaders, particularly in an election year.  Hubert Ingraham made the pilgrimage once and then swore to me that he would never go again.  He was offended that the Church gave him too long a passage of the bible to read and that Sir Lynden Pindling as Leader of the Opposition in 1993 got a louder applause than he did.  But back to our story.
    Cassius Stuart is the Leader of the Bahamas Democratic Movement (BDM), an extra parliamentary party.  He appeared at the convention and must have gotten carried away with the moment because he pledged to raise one thousand dollars to contribute to the church.  This gift was entirely unsolicited by the church.
    The next night, the Monday 11 March, Tommy Turnquest and his daddy Sir Orville showed up in tow with other candidates for the FNM.  The Church leader jokingly said to them that Mr. Stuart that had no money had promised to pay $1,000 and they supposed Mr. Turnquest could better that.  On the spot, Mr. Turnquest the junior pledged that there would be $500 given for each candidate present.
    This is shameless foolishness.  One is certain that the FNM think that they can buy votes in exchange for dollars.  But that was a strange thing for Mr. Stuart to do, who claims to want to revolutionize Bahamian politics.  It is now being disguised by some as saying that Mr. Stuart was in a Biblical sense trying to plant a seed, a churchy expression that means that the gift will cause goodwill.  But by any measure, it is a shameless attempt to influence votes by offering money.  The problem is everyone does it.  Perry Christie, Leader of the Opposition visited on Wednesday 13 march with his candidates.  No word on what he gave, but the advice of this Senator was not to get into a bidding war and if he was going to give a gift, do so quietly, hiding his light under a bushel.  What is that about the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing!

    The whole hierarchy of the Free National Movement descended on St. Paul’s Church in Fox Hill.  They say they did it at the spur of the moment.  For most, the fun moment was seeing Brent Symonette, son of the UBP Premier Sir Roland Symonette squirming in his seat as the Baptist vibrations of African rhythm filled the church hall.  Tommy Turnquest, the Leader designate was at it again giving out money (See Tommy and Cassius at the Church of God above).  This time, he pledged to pay half the cost of printing equipment needed by the church, amounting to some $4,500.  At this rate, churches should welcome them, take their money but vote PLP.  Poor Mr. Turnquest and his friends have not learned anything at all after the referendum.  They spent all that money on advertising, live broadcast and promotions and sixty per cent of the vote went against them!

    The headline above is a great expression that the Brits have for someone living in a world of unreality.  And that is how you must describe the FNM at the moment.  They are in cloud cuckoo land. The country has shifted on them.  People are now trying to concentrate on issues and making a living.  The FNM wants to try a smear campaign.  The example that one gives is the personal attacks on Paul Adderley and others during the referendum campaign.  Not even the church leaders were spared in the viciousness of the FNM’s attack.
    Now you have Ed Fields (see story above) caught in a dirty tricks campaign, with the promise of more to come.  Mr. Fields has put his company at risk by being a high profile Atlantis employee and involving himself with political skulduggery.  He is not even aware that within his company there has been a change with regard to the PLP.  They now accept that the PLP could well become the Government.  They are aware that under the FNM the foreign white expatriate has been able to get a leg up more than they should.  Being familiar with the change in South Africa when blacks took over, they are preparing for the change, knowing that the immigration policies in particular will change.
    The problem always is that the overseer for the plantation can’t tell when the shift has been made.  The master has changed his attitude but the chief slaves are the last to catch on.  That is why the whole FNM has their mind in a perpetual fog on these issues.  Cloud cuckoo land.

    Carey Leonard, the former President of the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and now Deputy Counsel to the Grand Bahama Port Authority, spoke to Rotary Club of Freeport last week to recycle an idea of his when he was President of the Chamber.  He called for the abolition of the Bahamian dollar and replacing it with the U.S, dollar as our national currency.  Mr. Leonard says that this will help to create a level playing field for the entry into the FTAA arrangements in 2005.  He said that this would also lower transaction costs for borrowing and doing business in The Bahamas.  The Turks and Caicos Islands use the US dollar as their currency.  Things that make you go: hmmm!

    Alsworth Audley “Cy” Smith is dead at the age of 70.  He died after a brief illness.  Mr. Smith is survived by his wife Chloe and two sons Hylan and Aaron.  Mr. Smith was a hefty man – short in stature but heavy and a great presence.  He was my friend in more than a political sense.  We met every time we went to Bimini.  He was my friend when I left the PLP and he was my friend when I returned.  He loved Bimini and used to love to ride his truck up and down the short and narrow roads of Bimini up and down all day.  Otherwise he could be found sitting at his establishment on the southern end of North Bimini holding court.  The Fisherman’s Inn was the gathering place for Bimini’s elite politicos.  I will really miss him and I am happy that I got an opportunity with Senator Obie Wilchcombe to visit with him before he died.  He said to us that he was trying to hold on until the victory was won and the PLP was the government again.  That unfortunately was not to be.  May he rest in peace.

Back To The Top


    The new Miss Bahamas Beauty Pageant committee has pulled off the pageant. The new Miss Bahamas that will go to the Miss Universe Pageant is Nadia Rodgers Albury.  She was crowned by Miss Universe Denise August  on  Sunday  10 March.  Felicity Delancey took the photo for the Bahama Journal of the new queen.

    If you had been there to see it for yourself and hear it, you would have thought that you were witnessing a visit by the Royal family. The Turnquests both Senior and Junior were there.  Both were called by the church to bring greetings.  After Junior had talked, Senior took to the podium to say that he would be brief.  In his words, he sounded the perfect and classic English gentleman:  “Tommy is now the spokesman for the family.”  And so we thought in honour of our very own Royal Family, we will rewrite our old national anthem as follows:

    Yeah right!

Why The FNM Should Lose the Next Election in Grand Bahama
This we dedicate News From Grand Bahama to just some of the many reasons why the FNM should not be returned to power.

Ingraham Should Have Been Ashamed – Just when he needed it, Prime Minister Ingraham showed no shame.  Mr. Ingraham was in Grand Bahama Saturday 16 March to officially open the ship care facility near Grand Bahama harbour.  This is the same ship care facility that has been plagued the community with environmental concerns and the same one that has still not given adequate answers on where they dispose of toxic residue.  Originally, the company promise to exported the residue for proper disposal.  Shame.  One good reason to vote FNM out.

Ingraham Should Have Been More Ashamed  - The Prime Minister also this past weekend officially opened a new road, built to replace the section of the Fishing Hole road which runs under a conveyor belt built to transport heavy crushed rock.  The Government allowed the conveyor belt to be constructed against the wishes of the community, but the real tragedy is that this new section of road was built without addressing a serious flooding problem on a causeway just hundreds of yards away.  People have been known to drown while attempting to go home in wet weather along this causeway.  Mr. Ingraham should be even more ashamed to officiate at this outrage.  We wonder if the causeway was ignored because it affects only Bahamians who have to get home to Eight Mile Rock and the western communities of Grand Bahama, where ‘bonded vehicles’ cannot go?

Rosati ‘The Knife’ Out of Control - Thomas ‘The Knife’ Rosati, the vice president of Resorts at Bahamia reportedly brought in to trim top Bahamians from the payroll is now reported to have cursed a Bahamian maid.  The story goes that Rosati had locked himself out of his room and demanded that a housekeeper let him in.  The housekeeper, not knowing Rosati by sight and fresh from a seminar on hotel procedure, informed him that he would have to visit the front desk.  His retort was unprintable.  Thomas Rosati was initially given only a six month work permit pending a reported investigation into charges that he didn’t know “how to speak to the workers”.  As we reported last week, that permit has just been extended for another year.  This is the state of labour relations in Freeport.

Bahamian Family’s Breadwinner Out? – News From Grand Bahama has been informed that expatriate chef Greg Carroll, recently granted a work permit for employment at Resorts at Bahamia is to displace Karl ‘Charlie’ Winters, married to a Bahamian wife and with two Bahamian children.  We hope the reports are wrong, but look out Charlie.  Resorts at Bahamia has hounded several top Bahamians out of jobs of long-standing simply by making life unbearable.  They have then been uniformly replaced by foreigners.  The state of labour relations in Freeport.

Michael Edwards Returns – FNM apparatchik Mike Edwards has been returned to a position of prominence in the FNM, following his internal championship of the ‘NO’ vote in the recent national referendum.  Edwards, who was last year betrayed by his friends in the party and ousted as Northern Region Vice Chair has now been promoted to the position of joint co-ordinator of the FNM election campaign in Grand Bahama.  Mr. Edwards is a well known ally of Algernon Allen and his rehabilitation came amidst reports of bitter protests from the Ingraham camp of the party.

CDR At Crossroads – The opposition splinter group Coalition For Democratic Reform appears to be approaching a crossroads in its political life.  Of three political rallies held on Grand Bahama Friday night, the CDR’s was the only one with attendance numbered in three digits.  “That’s being kind,” said one political observer, “but one thing is clear; the CDR has some decisions to make about it’s future in this island”.  Observers wonder whether the party’s leadership, though “valiant and well intentioned” might not now sue for reconciliation with their political root force.

24th March, 2002
This Week on
Bahamas Government Website Neville Wisdom / PLP Delaporte
John Carey / PLP Carmichael... Melanie Griffin / PLP Yamacraw
Alfred Sears / PLP Fort Charlotte... Bahamians First.Com / PLP Grand Bahama
Shane Gibson / Golden Gates...  Bradley Roberts / PLP Grants Town...
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My telephone was ringing off the hook first thing Wednesday morning 20 March.  Did you hear what Tommy had to say about you?  No I did not.  I do not watch or listen to what Tommy has to say except for the purposes of this column.  Ordinarily his ramblings won’t get my attention.  But what people heard him say was the same thing the FNM and my political opponent trotted out in the 1997 campaign.  Tommy is apparently confused about the gender of my opponent who happens to be a woman.  Perhaps he and my opponent might share some time and he might discover what is what.

But be that as it may, the FNM has a real problem.  Their internal surveys show that they have a serious difficulty in three constituencies that they studied: Fox Hill, Golden Gates and South Beach.  The PLP is favoured by significant margins.  Of the 200 persons questioned in Fox Hill, 155 answered that they intended to vote for the PLP and 45 were either undecided or FNM.  That is what their statistics are telling them.  So the problem is, what issue do they have to fight us on?  There is none.  So they turn to a nasty campaign.  Oh by the way, we are talking about Tommy Turnquest, the man who wants to be leader of our country.

Perry Christie, the Leader of the Opposition, put it best when he said at the PLP’s rally on the R.M. Bailey Park on Thursday 21 March when he asked how Tommy could shape his mouth to call anyone corrupt, when he himself is under a cloud of suspicion for giving a fat contract to an FNM party officer who then turned around and paid for a party for Mr. Turnquest.  These are amazing and nasty people.

Janet Jackson has a song that says nasty don’t mean a thing.  The Leader of the Opposition has asked us all to take the high road, and not engage in mudslinging with the FNM.  But rest assured, this Senator will not go undefended.  Tommy Turnquest is hereby warned.

This week we had 39,638 hits on this site for the week ending 23rd March at midnight.  That makes a total of 134,960 hits on this site for the month of March. Thanks for reading and please keep reading.

photo by Nello Lambert, taken at 'Montrose' - Christmas 2000

by Kendal Demeritte

Cupid’s Cay - Governor’s Harbour Eleuthera, where thousands converged in great jubilation to hear the message of hope from the next Prime Minister of The Bahamas, Perry ’The Untouchable’ Christie, as he outlined a sincere position for the resurrection of the economy in Eleuthera, whose economic plans will bring great prosperity with FULL employment…  As I stood there amongst the cheering crowd I thought maybe the Great Late Bahamian musician, Wendell Stuart, would really appreciate the sentiments exuberated by the people there. It was like Wendell singing “I thank heaven for sending you here to fill my loneliness, to fill my empty heart with love”, and to fulfil those empty promises made by that outgoing, uncaring, incompetent, FNM Government and its Party headed by Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. That so called “Dream Team”. Then I said the people of Eleuthera would truly thank heaven for the PLP for sending in the south, Oswald Ingraham, and in the north, Damian Gomez…ALL THE WAY!

The Corner On First
The FNM is the first political party in a National General Election to present to the Bahamian people and its electorate as a leader and a Deputy. Two men clouded with corruption namely Butch Cassidy, alias Tommy, and Sundance Kid, alias Dion. 


12th Review of the Judiciary
11th Review of the Judiciary
Mitchell Address to Senate: Why the PM is the way he is
Mitchell speech to PLP Convention 2000
Pindling & Me - A personal retrospective on the life and times of Sir Lynden by Fred Mitchell
Address to the Senate Budget Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to the Senate Clifton Cay Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to PLP Leadership meeting in Exuma / Haitian Issue

Address of Sean McWeeney / Pindling  funeral
Gilbert Morris on OECD Blacklist
Fred Mitchell Antioch College speech
The funeral coverage

For a photo essay on the funeral of Archdeacon William Thompson. Click here.

Professor Gilbert Morris on the country's blacklisting  Coverage of Sir Lynden's death & funeral


Site Links
The PLP Position on Clifton Canadian contacts Reg & Kit's Bahamas Links Bahamian Cycling News Links to Bahamians on the web Politics Forum Harbour Island Site



    The election season is on in earnest in The Bahamas.  One need only walk into any bar, on the docks, on the streets.  As politicians pass by, they are stopped, interviewed, questioned.  They are expected to have the gift of total recall.  In a way it’s like Christmas.  The Government has announced that it has found the money to pay those long overdue raises and increments to the persons who work in the public service.  That’s a big surprise of course.  You remember back when the 11 September took place and the Government said that the raises and increments had to be put on hold because the revenue was under performing, we said that the revenue would stop under performing just before the election.  Sure enough, the raises are coming on the pay-day, four days before the election on 4 May.  This is the same kind of election bribery that Hubert Ingraham engaged in for election 1997.  He paid the police the night before the election a lump sum $1500 salary payment and on the platform told the police when they went to the polls they must “remember the money”.
    This time we think that it is different.  We think people have learned that the effect of the money wears off but the bad policies of the FNM can last for five years.  This time, it is time for them to go.  That sets the scene now for what we call the battle of the crowds.  The Nassau Guardian published two photos of the public rallies held in Nassau on Thursday 21 March.  One was the PLP on R.M. Bailey Park, the traditional venue for the FNM.  The other was the FNM rally at Seagrape Shopping Centre.  The PLP says that the number at the rally was near 15,000.  The FNM crowd was estimated at one third that size.  The PLPs taunted FNM supporters who looked on with shocked faces as they passed following the end of their meeting.  The PLPs kept shouting at them: “Look at the people”.  Look at the people indeed.  This election is not in the bag for the PLP by a long shot but it sure looks good.  Guardian photos; PLP at left, FNM at right.

    Keod Smith exposed the actions of the FNM in trying to buy votes.  Last week we reported how John Brown accused Tommy Turnquest through his brother-in-law Ed Fields of seeking to influence votes by giving a lawn mower to Mr. Brown.  The reports coming in now say that occasional crews are now being hired by the Government to clean up the sides of the roads for six weeks.  Hmm!  Six weeks, isn’t that until just after the election?  We also know that every nook and cranny is being paved, except areas that are thought to be PLP.  Then there are construction projects being announced at every turn.
    Suddenly the Government has found the money to repair the Pompey Museum at a cost of $60,000.  The museum that is a remembrance of the slave past of our country was burned and damaged by the fire at the Straw Market in September 2001.  It has lain there dormant until now.  Craig Gomez is the Chairman of the Museum and Antiquities Corporation said that he was looking forward to having the prized possession back in place.  The contractor was also predicting at the press conference on Thursday 21 March that the museum would be up and running within eleven weeks.  Dr. Kirk Tinker, who is the museum’s Director was pleased with the contract signing and predicted that when completed the museum will be enhanced.  We believe all of the above.  The only dolt in the whole thing was the Minister of Works Kenneth Russell.  We can’t figure out why he was there.  He wouldn’t understand what a museum is much less know what to say about it.
    Here’s what Minister Russell had to say: “Keeping symbols of your history are good because it helps you learn where you came from and where you are going.  In this case, I am very happy that we are restoring this building so that all of the historical artefacts that were in that building can be placed for visitors and residents alike [so that they] can go in and understand that we are where we came from and [for] our young people to understand exactly where they are going.”  Now do you really think Ken Russell knew what he was talking about?  If he did, he would know that one thing that people now know is to go away from the FNM and his Government – bribery or no bribery.  Oh by the way, the footnote to the bribery story is that John Brown is now reportedly at the centre of an investigation into a missing trailer said to be the property of attorney Branford McCartney.  Mr. McCartney told the Tribune that he visited the police to complain about Mr. Brown.  Now isn’t it interesting that the complainant suddenly becomes the defendant in an unrelated matter?  No word on whether Tommy Turnquest is being investigated by the police for trying to buy votes.

    The PLP and the FNM had meetings head to head in Freeport, Grand Bahama on Friday 15 March.  PLP Leader Perry Christie has decided that this is the way to go.  He has to face the FNM down at every turn, even on their own ground.  The result has been overwhelming.  PLP supporters and would be supporters have turned out in droves.  FNM rallies have generally been sad, sad affairs.  But one could argue at least with the numbers of the PLP and the FNM.  The evidence is there to see that there is mass following for those political parties.  What must have been disappointing however was the fact that Dr. Bernard Nottage’s Coalition for Democratic Reform could not manage more than fifty persons at that during their rally on the same night in Grand Bahama.  It started all the talk in Nassau.
    ZNS TV showed each of the rallies.  Thousands at the PLP rally.  Thousands at the FNM rally.  A score or so at the CDR rally.  You could hear it in the voice of Dr. Nottage and see it on his face.  It was disappointing.  This was the turnout after their candidate Phenton Neymour of South Beach said on public radio that Grand Bahama was no longer FNM country, it was CDR country.  In a public relations sense a third party should not try to match up against the big parties.  It must at least try to maintain the illusion of being up there with the big boys.  To do that you can't pick opportunities on the same night as the big boys.
    Dr. Nottage was embroiled in another imbroglio during this past week.  He held a press conference to complain that he had been disinvited from a debate on Island FM radio for today Sunday 24 March.  Charles Carter the station's owner decided that the debate would make sense only with the PLP and FNM leaders.  Dr. Nottage cried foul.  The Nassau Guardian showed the coin toss that decided who would go first in the debate.  The show is about to start at 3 p.m. as this site goes up.  If there is any excitement, we shall update the site immediately.

    We reported last week the vote buying exercise by Tommy Turnquest, inspired by his brother-in-law Ed Fields.  We have reported that this week the complainant in that matter is now under investigation by the FNM instead of the FNM being under investigation.  But Keod Smith, the PLPs candidate for Mt. Moriah in New Providence was not satisfied with the treatment that his allegations was receiving.  So he took the battle to the home of Tommy Turnquest on Harrold Road.  The police came out in force, and Tommy had a set of goons out at the front gate to stop Mr. Smith and his supporters.  Mr. Smith and John Brown decided that they should return the lawn mower that Ed Fields and Tommy Turnquest bought for Mr. Brown.
    The police intervened and took the placards from Mr. Smith.  They said that he was demonstrating without a permit.  We don’t know why the police keep insisting on this silly law about permission to demonstrate.  They can give permission right on the site.  But after the incident at Tommy's house, there was a lot of sanctimonious moaning in the FNM about how Keod could go to a man’s house.  They orchestrated comments and faxes on radio shows condemning Keod.  We do no such thing.  All we have to remember is that the FNM did everything in their power to destroy the PLP.  There was nothing that they would not do and did not do.  In fact, as we reported, nasty Tommy Turnquest was on the public platform engaging in the most slanderous comments about PLPs from the platform.  So let’s not have any false sorrow for Tommy and his castle.  Tommy deserves what he gets.

    The word is that the song Tommy T and Me, the political ad commissioned by the FNM, is now banned in its new form at the Queen’s College Primary School.  The little children have their own version of the song.  One version is Tommy T is stink a pee.  Another is Tommy T and me, Kiss my bungy, ‘cause you gon smother this country.  For those who are not Bahamian, bungy is the Bahamian word for the hindquarters of the human animal.  We understand that Tommy’s wife is the vice principal of the school.  Now if that’s the case, the banning of the song by the administration means that the person banning the song had an interest and did not disclose it.

    James Gibson, the father of PLP candidate for Kennedy Kenyatta Gibson, died at his home in Lyford Cay On Monday 18 March.  He had a long battle with prostate cancer.  He was 68 years old.  Kenyatta Gibson speaking to the crowd at the PLP’s rally in Thursday 21 March, thanked them for their expressions of sympathy.  He said that his father was the “wind beneath his wings”.  Mr. Gibson was a prominent cabinetmaker and businessman in The Bahamas.  He was buried following a church service at Holy Cross Anglican Church on Saturday 22 March. We extend our sympathy to the Gibsons.  He is survived by his wife Clara, our Christmas shopping buddy, and in addition to his son Kenyatta, sons Ricardo, Derek, Kwame and daughters Renee Cassandra, Lisa.

    The Sir Lynden Pindling foundation is searching for nominees from the public for its annual award for excellence.  The first award was given to the Golden Girls in recognition of their achievements in sports last year.  Nominations should be sent to P.O. Box N 488, Nassau, The Bahamas.  The nominees should have a record of public service of at least 20 years.  The nominations should be accompanied by a typewritten summary of not more than 250 words about the person’s life that exemplifies the sense of purpose in their lives, passion for their chosen work, self-discipline, courage to take risks and to face difficult odds, a willingness to welcome and acknowledge the help and support of others, determination to give of their best at all times, the ability to deal positively with conflict failure, anger, hurt and frustration, patience, grace in achievement.  The fields that the Committee is specially looking to are medicine and allied health professionals and education.  Sir Lynden would have been 71 on 22 March of this year.  To commemorate his birthday, there was the annual Sir Lynden Pindling lecture by George Mackey, the former Minister of Housing for the PLP on Thursday 21 March at the College of The Bahamas.

    It has been announced that Hilda Bowen, the first UK trained Bahamian nurse has died at the age of 78.  Nurse Bowen who was honoured by the National Heroes Day Committee and conferred with title Honourable for Life in 1998 was a giant in her field.  She was the first Bahamian matron of the public hospital the Princess Margaret.  She was later appointed Chief Nursing Officer.  She was awarded an MBE in 1969.  Nurse Bowen was a giant of a woman in the years when it was rare for Black people to succeed at positions of authority in the country.  She ranks up there with men like the late Rodney Bain, the first Bahamian Secretary of the Cabinet.  She is survived by her sister Winifred Bowen-Lightbourne and three nephews Henry, Michael and Irving Lightbourne and a niece.  We express our sympathy to the family.

    The Pilots Union and the Union of the line staff of Bahamasair have met with the Leader of the Opposition at their request.  They are concerned about the future of Bahamasair that most people say is in the worse shape than it has ever been in the history of the airline’s 30 years.  The FNM came to office with 14 planes and numerous international routes.  Today they have seven planes and only routes to Miami.  They met a loss of 12 million dollars per year.  They now lose 30 million dollars per year.  Perry Christie says that if the losing of 12 million under the PLP was incompetence by the FNM's standards, what do you call losing 30 million?
    I believe the airline must be privatized by giving the right to other airlines to fly the domestic routes of the Bahamas, while Bahamasair tries to concentrate on its international routes.  On Friday 22 March, the Bahamasair General Manager Paul Major who came to office in the expectation that the airline could be turned around in two years had to admit that the airline was a mess. Of the seven planes, including two 1969 version 737 jets, only two planes were working.  The result was massive delays in the system and angry passengers including missed connections by foreign tourists trying to get home.  Not a word from the Government.  Mr. Christie has promised to fix Bahamasair as a matter of priority.  The public is outraged and so they should be.

    William Allen, the Finance Minister was proud as a peacock at a press conference last Sunday 17 March when he announced that he had on behalf of The Bahamas signed on to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) harmful tax initiative.  Now we believe that it is a harmful tax initiative but not for the reason that the OECD says.  It is harmful to The Bahamas, causing us the loss of jobs and the dismantling of the offshore sector in this country.  Bill Allen and Hubert Ingraham ought to be ashamed of themselves for once again selling this country down the drain.  The caveat they say that they negotiated was that they will not enact laws as part of the initiative unless the other OECD countries and our competitors agree to do the same.  The OECD is said to have accepted that position.  Now the point is how is that going to be enforced.  It is a useless caveat.  They are also saying that because Switzerland is not going to sign on at all that it will make no difference what OECD wants to do, The Bahamas they say will have nothing to worry about it.
    These guys are too clever for themselves.  They really ought to come clean with the Bahamian people.  They have once again sold the country down the drain.  The IBC business is collapsing every day.  Revenues are being lost, jobs are being lost and you have Bahamian officials simply joining on to these initiatives.  This is treasonous.  Further we say William Allen and Hubert Ingraham have lied to the Bahamian people about the state of this economy.  We report below on two statements made by this Senator on that problem.  We must vote the FNM out of Government.

Back To The Top

Two statements were made this past week by this Senator as Opposition spokesman on Foreign Affairs, Labour and Immigration.  The thrust of the statements is that the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance are misleading the country on the question of the economy.  The Prime Minister was in Grand Bahama on Saturday 16 March telling the people there that the economy is doing well and that to prove it, the reserves are at 349 million dollars US.  That is misleading because the Government has deliberately contracted the economy over the past six months, by limiting consumer loans and private sector expansion. They have blocked out the private sector from borrowing.   They have been stopping foreign companies from remitting their profits.  All of these measures will give an artificial level of the reserves.  But the kicker is this: the level of reserves at 349 million buys the same ten weeks of supplies for the country less oil imports that the 200 million bought in the winter of 1992 when the PLP lost office. That means in economic terms we are no further ahead than when the PLP left office. Please click here for those statements.

    They keep saying that they are all together.  That’s the mantra of the FNM these days with the return of Algernon Allen.  The problem is that they are not really all together.  Hubert Ingraham, their leader (we think) has been virtually been kicked off the FNM platform and there is great distance being put between them and Hubert Ingraham.  Little Tommy Tucker as Tommy Turnquest is being called is now on his own.  The rumour is that Dion Foulkes, the Deputy Leader designate, is going to be dumped because he is a liability.  Mr. Foulkes went on national radio in Nassau to refute the assertion by the Prime Minister that he was involved in corrupt activity. It is sure to cause an eruption by Hubert Ingraham during the coming week.
    The Ingraham forces are seething at their man being kicked out and them no longer having a place in the campaign. To show how fragile the peace is, the Turnquest forces and the Allen forces almost came to blows at the Seagrape Shopping Centre rally on Thursday 21 March.  Mr. Allen’s forces proposed to carry out a ceremonial torch lighting ceremony.  This is something reserved only for the leader.  Now remember Mr. Allen has asserted that he still wishes to be leader of the FNM.  Senator Edwin ‘Vikey’ Brown sent out an order that the Allen forces were to be stopped.  The two sides faced off until an order came to the Allen forces to stand down.  So how can they be all together?  They are apart.  You don’t reward this useless Government for their bad works by putting them back in office.  Let us tell the all together gang be gone.

    The “All Together” gang of the FNM that is really all apart has been sending out an S.O.S. to Pierre Dupuch and Tennyson Wells.  Both men are dissident FNMs and the “All Together gang” headed by Tommy Turnquest has been asking them both to come back home.  Mr. Wells said that in recent weeks Anglican Archdeacons Keith Cartwright and Etienne Bowleg have asked him to drop his opposition to the new leaders and run as an FNM in Bamboo Town.  Where does that leave former Senator Calvin Johnson, the PM’s sacrificial lamb who gave up his good job in New York to get slaughtered in the general election (figuratively speaking of course)?  Looks like there is no rescue for Mr. Johnson.
    Tennyson Wells told the Love 97 programme ‘Election Dialogue’ on Friday 22 March in his own words: “This country deserves as its leaders persons who have not been corrupted and who can demonstrate that they are not corrupt.  Not persons who the evidence clearly shows that they would be prepared to corrupt the system, not only in the party itself but the country.  We need honesty and transparency in the party and the government.  The country comes before the party… [Mr. Turnquest and Mr. Foulkes] must acknowledge and confess their wrongs, do penance, make recompense and ask for forgiveness.”  Well that will hold them!

    He has been a Vanguard Nationalist Socialist in the early 1970s.  He was a friend of the Castro regime and then a Communist.  He became a capitalist and a PLP supporter in the 1980s after denouncing Pindling as someone trying to get him jailed and killed.  As a capitalist, he was able to use his communist ties when Cuba opened up to capitalist exploitation to make money.  In the bargain, he was able to get scholarships for Bahamian students.  That programme was abruptly ended by the FNM Government and the Cuban Government last year.  Parents were screaming for his head and they went to Tanya McCartney, the FNM Senator and candidate for South Beach to get redress.
    Well surprise, surprise, Mr. Campbell has now announced that he has had it with the PLP.  Just as the FNM has reached the bottom of its popularity, Mr. Campbell has made another smart move.  He joined the PLP in 1992 just as the PLP was about to lose.  Now he has announced he is joining the FNM, just as they are about to lose.  Mr. Campbell was rather high minded about it all and a little bit sentimental.  Said Mr. Campbell to the Nassau Guardian on Monday 18 March: “ … Both of these men [Dion Foulkes and Tommy Turnquest] have demonstrated the fine personal qualities of patience and dignity in the face of relentless attacks and abuse.  I shall work aggressively with Algernon Allen and Foulkes at the party level to assist in achieving the party’s national objectives… I have chosen a course of action that I am comfortable with, to walk and struggle with men I have known all my life.  Some I have sat with in classrooms at Queen’s College during my school years, and some I have debated against.”   Isn’t it interesting that Mr. Campbell is praising two men who have a cloud of corruption hanging over their heads?  Isn’t it interesting that nary a word has been heard from Senator Tanya McCartney in pursuit of the recovery of the moneys for those parents of Bahamians who lost their deposit money for study in Cuba, since Mr. Campbell joined the FNM?  Things that make you go: Hmmm!  And as that famous theological phrase goes: “ Principle don’t put bread on the table.”  The corollary to that must be that money does.

In Memory of Transparency, Openness and Accountability….

23 New Bahamians – The Freeport News reports that it was asked to leave a ‘private ceremony’ held at the Office of the Prime Minister in Grand Bahama to swear in 23 new Bahamian citizens this past week.  Minister of Immigration Earl Deveaux who was in Grand Bahama for the ceremony should be ashamed at this act of censorship and Government in the shade, if indeed there was nothing to hide.  The newspaper reports that nationals originally from Haiti, Turks and Caicos, Jamaica, America and Guyana were sworn in as Bahamians.  We wonder if there will be a corresponding rise in the list of registered voters.

Tension High At FCP – Tensions are high at the Hutchison Freeport Container Port (FCP) as time runs out for forty Bahamians employed at the Bahamian engineering firm Motherwell Bridge Bhicam.  FCP has moved to put Bhicam out of business by internalizing the FCP engineering function and hiring Bhicam employees directly.  Now inside sources say that with a week left before the Bhicam arrangement expires, FCP has offered salaries to the Bhicam workers which are “significantly less” than they currently earn.  FCP is said to be in a bind, because the Bhicam salaries are much higher than current unit salaries at the harbour.  FCP’s parent company Hutchison has been severely embarrassed by the Bhicam scandal where leading Grand Bahama community figures have accused FCP of unethical practices through engineering manager Mauricio D’Orfeo and Port Manager Gary Lempke.  Now Hutchison has sent its worldwide port managing director from Hong Kong to investigate and rescue the situation. This past week, officials of the Ministry of Labour met with Hutchison’s new top executive in Grand Bahama, sources say aimed at “solving the labour issues created by these heavy-handed managers”.  Meantime, Bhicam workers are demanding that some respect be shown to the fact that they are breadwinners with mortgages to pay and families to support.  “We would rather stay where we are.  We have done a good job and Bhicam has done a good job.  There is no reason to treat us like this.”

Minister Ken Russell Advocates Vendors Dispossession – At a recent public event, the FNM MP for High Rock and Minister of Works Kenneth Russell floated the idea of moving Grand Bahama straw vendors from their current location at Goombay Park, near Resorts at Bahamia.  Minister Russell proposes that the vendors be moved to a site mounded by cement dust and distant on the Fishing Hole Road from any tourist facility.  If not for Palm Sunday, the Minister would surely be a shoo-in for the nomination to our ‘Jackass of The Week’ award.  Sources say that powerful forces have instructed the Minister in this matter.  The straw vendors present location has increased in value since renovations began at Resorts at Bahamia.

Resorts’ Rosati Apologizes - Our story last week about Resorts at Bahamia vice president Thomas ‘the knife’ Rosati and his cursing of  ‘Sister’ Johnson, the long-time maid at the hotel received quick results.  Rosati is reported to have called all housekeeping staff together and apologized for calling the lady in question an as. h… He is reported to have termed the incident as the “worst day” in his life.  The abused maid is said to have accepted Rosati’s apology in an act of Christian charity

Resorts Night Auditor Cussed & Suspended – In another embarrassment for Resorts at Bahamia, the Freeport News hs reported that a night auditor at the hotel has been suspended without pay following an incident with an expatriate manager.  The night auditor parked her car in a parking lot which had been temporarily closed and was verbally abused by the expat manager.  She was suspended without pay for objecting to the manner in which she was spoken to.  Staff who witnessed the incident are now outraged.

Threats from Resorts at Bahamia – Informants tell News From Grand Bahama that Friday 22 March, Resorts owner Buddemeyer told senior management staff that he is contemplating closing the Country Club at Bahamia and cutting back the hotel airline’s flights into Grand Bahama because of a lack of co-operation from Government.  We believe this is a threat to keep workers under submission and control.  This is established operating procedure from the Resorts at Bahamia owner, who previously threatened to abandon the property if the main public road nearby was not dug up and included in the hotel deal.

Hotel Union Votes To Strike Resorts – The members of the Bahamas Hotel, Catering & Allied Workers Union have voted to strike against Resorts at Bahamia.  Union President Pat Bain says all they want is for people to be treated with dignity and respect in a partnership for success.  Among the gripes: workers on holiday from Resorts at Bahamia must now report in each week during their holiday for holiday pay.

Resorts Summons FNM MPs – Reliable Sources report that Grand Bahama FNM MPs C.A. Smith and David Thompson were summoned to a meeting by the owners of Resorts at Bahamia.  Ambassador for Investment Thompson was reportedly called upon to give an account of his behaviour in joining a workers demonstration against the resort.  Meantime, our sources say that Grand Bahama MPs are more concerned over the apparent loss of signing privileges at the hotels.  The sources report that “David wanted to make a good stand but C.A. didn’t stick to the plan and back him up.”

Basic Mistakes at ‘Our’ Lucaya - Senior workers at ‘Our’ Lucaya have told News From Grand Bahama that the company continues to suffer from “basic mistakes in the areas of food and beverage, accounting controls and sales and marketing because it has no confidence in Bahamians who have been here for more than 30 years”.  The workers complain that only one top Bahamian manager (Human Resources Manager Freddie Munnings) sits in the executive meetings, with every other area headed by expatriates.  Said the source, “This is in a country that has been in hotel business for over fifty years”.

Ship Care Workers Let Go – Just scant days after the ship care facility in Grand Bahama was officially opened by Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham, thirty five Bahamians have been let go from the business.  The ship care facilities report that they were unskilled temporary workers, but the fired Bahamians say that similarly unskilled Romanians are still employed.

Carifta Team Omission – Concerned coaches in Grand Bahama are asking why is Java Johnson not on the Bahamas Carifta team? Java reportedly ran the best time in the Caribbean this year for 100 metre dash under 17 boys, but was not included on the team.  Sources say that although the time was run at an officially sanctioned meet, “apparently one bad day during Carifta trials is enough to knock you off the team”.  Java is a student at the Jack Hayward High School.

Nehemiah Rolle Gunned Down – 38 year old Nehemiah Rolle was shot to death in his driveway, Friday 22 March in Grand Bahama.  Rolle was shot outside Ruby Swiss restaurant in Freeport last year in what was termed an attempted contract hit.  He survived in that incident and disappeared.  Word on the street is that the killing was in retaliation for a disagreement over drug money.

31st March, 2002
This Week on
Bahamas Government Website Neville Wisdom / PLP Delaporte
John Carey / PLP Carmichael... Melanie Griffin / PLP Yamacraw
Alfred Sears / PLP Fort Charlotte... Bahamians First.Com / PLP Grand Bahama
Shane Gibson / Golden Gates...  Bradley Roberts / PLP Grants Town...
Click on a heading to go to that story; press ctrl+home to return to the top of the page.



For those who don’t know how to figure it out, the formula for when Easter Sunday falls is as follows.  It is the first Sunday after the first full moon after the equinox.  The spring equinox is 21 March, and the full moon is up in the sky and so today is Easter.  It is my favourite time of year.  It is also the favourite of many Bahamians.  There was a massive traffic jam around Potter’s Cay as Bahamians crammed on to the dock to make their last minute purchases of fish for the long weekend.

It is interesting that so much of what we do to celebrate or mark occasions has to do with eating.  Good Friday has its own ritual, when you are expected to eat fish.  And so all the docks were crowded with people buying fish to fry.  The favourite in The Bahamas is the goggle eye - can’t stand them but that’s the tradition.  I prefer a grunt, snapper or a Margaret fish.  Clarence Moss who is a constituent in Fox Hill does a fish fry and his clan joined him to chew up the fish head on Good Friday.

In the meantime the faking FNM issued an edict saying that there was not to be any campaigning during Holy Week!  Yeah right! This is the same crew who challenged the church not six weeks ago in the referendum, insulted the Archbishop, and the same crew who ran a whole election campaign during Lent in 1997 and this year with the Referendum.  They have suddenly found religion.

The funniest photo of the week though had to be the photo of Tommy Turnquest allegedly playing basketball at a celebrity tournament in Nassau.  It sure looked us like he just put on that pose for the cameras, then probably sped off in his official limousine as soon as the shot was taken.

That’s the FNM for you. All public relations, sound and fury.  The landscape of New Providence is littered with one billboard after the next of FNM candidates.  We are sick of them really.  Is it any wonder that Gaynell Rolle had hers torn down by some persons unknown.  Of course a big deal was made of that on ZNS.  All sorts of comments by Ms. Rolle, the FNM's candidate for Pinewood, suggesting that maybe it was the PLP who did it.  Of course, they used to say in Chicago in the days when the former Mayor Richard Daley controlled the place with an iron hand, he was a Democrat, that if you saw a democratic car with flattened tires and cracked windows meant to show that the Republicans were up to dirty tricks, it was a sure bet that the opposite was the case.  It was the democrats and Daley up to dirty tricks.  So we wouldn’t be surprised if it was the FNM who tore their own sign down to blame it on the PLP.

The FNM is desperate.  They now are trying to smear the PLP on the drug issue.  We report on that below.  And we think that there is a clear case for prosecutorial abuse with the charging of John Brown who accused Tommy Turnquest and his wicked brother-in-law Ed Fields of trying to buy votes, who has now been charged with stealing a boat trailer.  Now is that not a co-incidence?

We report on these two matters below.

This week we had 28,322 hits on the site for the week ending 30 March 2002 at midnight.  The total for the month of March is 163,191 hits.  Thanks for reading and please keep reading.

photo by Nello Lambert, taken at 'Montrose' - Christmas 2000

by Kendal Demeritte

'Well cheer up sleepy Jane...' What does it really mean...? 
To a degenerating FNM party and its out going regime, to hear the Chairman of the FNM attempting to accuse the Honourable Perry Christie, Leader of the PLP, of accepting monies from drug felons.  Could he really be serious?  Somebody please just pinch the Corner, if there is anybody who knows Perry Christie, better than most, it’s this Corner.  And Perry is not perfect… he has his faults, in recent times we have had our differences, but to say that Perry Gladstone Christie will get involved with anything other than the right things would be truly outlandish and chronically insane…  This is really HOLY WEEK and the things I really want to say are not appropriate at this time as we celebrate the resurrection of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…  but OHH to Billie Joe “Dwight, Bush Cassidy, Sun-Dance Kid, and Hop-along, I am sending a warning, I am Giving you seven days to withdraw those erroneous assertions and publicly apologize to Mr. Christie and to this nation.  Remember… The woods are still beautiful dark and deep, I have promises I don’t have to keep.  Unlike the Old African Proverb that goes like this… “Until the Lion acquires its own historian, the tale of the hunt will only glorify the hunter”…  Dwight Sawyer and the F.N.M… this Lion has its own Historian!  IN 7 DAYS!!!…HOPE TO HEAR FROM YOU…AND MILES TO GO BEFORE I SLEEP!

The corner on Anniversaries… Again this is Holy Week
Do you think the FNM realizes this is the 30th anniversary of the death of one of its operatives and agents the late Barry Major, who was brutally slain in Perpall Tract by other members of his FNM terror squad because he attempted to speak the truth about the operations of the FNM goon squad and terror group who torched buildings and terrorized PLP’s and other Bahamians in the infamous 1972 election campaign?  Poor Barry died I believe because he wanted out and some felt he might have betrayed the group… and he came up a few pounds short… of you know what. I almost forgot this is Holy Week! 


12th Review of the Judiciary
11th Review of the Judiciary
Mitchell Address to Senate: Why the PM is the way he is
Mitchell speech to PLP Convention 2000
Pindling & Me - A personal retrospective on the life and times of Sir Lynden by Fred Mitchell
Address to the Senate Budget Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to the Senate Clifton Cay Debate / Haitian Issue
Address to PLP Leadership meeting in Exuma / Haitian Issue

Address of Sean McWeeney / Pindling  funeral
Gilbert Morris on OECD Blacklist
Fred Mitchell Antioch College speech
The funeral coverage

For a photo essay on the funeral of Archdeacon William Thompson. Click here.

Professor Gilbert Morris on the country's blacklisting  Coverage of Sir Lynden's death & funeral


Site Links
The PLP Position on Clifton Canadian contacts Reg & Kit's Bahamas Links Bahamian Cycling News Links to Bahamians on the web Politics Forum Harbour Island Site


    The police officers looked as if they were shocked by the circus of media that greeted them when John Brown was arraigned at the Magistrates Court on Wednesday 27 March.  The background to this is that John Brown was the man (click here for last week’s story) that made the accusation that Ed Fields, the brother-in-law of Tommy Turnquest (FNM Leader designate) gave him a lawnmower to get the man to vote for Mr. Turnquest.   Mr. Brown has now been arrested on the complaint of Branford McCartney, an attorney, who says that his boat went missing from Unicorn Village pre-school where it was parked.
    The background to this some say is that the report of the stolen boat was made and the allegations against Mr. Brown were considered by prosecutors but then dismissed.  But after Mr. Brown made his complaint against Tommy Turnquest with PLP candidate for Mr.Turnquest’s seat Keod Smith, the arrest of Mr. Brown took place.  He was granted $20,000 bail.  Outside the court were all the Bahamian media, TV cameras and newspapers.  This seems a perfect case to bring an action in the courts to stop the prosecution of this offence as a gross abuse of prosecutorial authority.  The prosecution in these circumstances may be a violation of the right to a fair trial.  It should be blocked by the courts.  It seems a clearly politically motivated act of victimization.

    A Bahamasair plane on Friday 22 March broke down on the runaway.  Guess what.  There is only one operational runway at the Nassau International Airport.  The others and the one now in use need to be upgraded.  Because of the Bahamasair breakdown, the Nassau International Airport had to be closed down for three hours and so flight after flight was delayed.  Airplane operators were furious.  Meanwhile mealy-mouthed C.A. Smith, the Minister of Transport was holding forth with a press conference to say how the Bahamas and Nassau International Airport had passed all the stringent security tests of the Americans to make the airport safe from terrorists.  This must be the joke of the year.  First, what’s the point of having an airport safe from terrorists when you don’t even have runways that are properly operational?  You don’t need security at all, if there is no functioning airport.  Not to worry said C.A. Smith, the runways were being looked at and they would be upgraded.  Fortunately for the country, it won’t be CA. Smith who will oversee the completion of the runway project. Tribune photo of the Minister and his P.S. by Felipe Major.

    Dwight Sawyer, the Chairman of the Free National Movement, called a press conference on Wednesday 27 March.  He made the allegation that the PLP and its Leader are being supported by drug money.  On the same day, the national dirt rag, The Punch published a made up story about how Perry Christie’s delegation to Eleuthera was met by drug boys.  The Tribune was not left out of the act.  It got a letter that it provided to the Leader of the PLP saying that the PLP had received a pledge of one million dollars from a drug boy in Eleuthera.  But it is believed to be the same drug boy that Hubert Ingraham is said to have promised a pardon, and from whom the FNM accepted money in the 1997 campaign to defeat the PLP in 1997.
    Perry Christie, Leader of the PLP, was quick off the mark.  He said that anyone who stayed in a hotel owned by any drug kingpin was not doing so with the authority of the PLP.  Further, he knew nothing of any pledge of one million dollars.  The Tribune went further and made allegations that businessman Austin Knowles Jr. was going to pay the PLP one million dollars.  Not so said Mr. Christie.  He denied that Mr. Knowles was funding the campaigns in North and South Eleuthera and West End and Bimini.
    Senator Obie Wilchcombe also denied that he was being bankrolled by Mr. Knowles.  As for the rumour that some 7000 PLP T shirts were provided by Mr. Knowles, Mr. Christie said: “If Mr. Knowles did so, it was done without our knowledge or authority and without the knowledge or authority of the PLP's candidates in Eleuthera.”  The Tribune in an editorial by the politically dishonest Eileen Carron said that the PLP's leader must say where he stands on drugs.  This is all part of an orchestrated campaign of desperation.  Now that they have no issues to fight the PLP on, they need to start smearing people.

    There was a debate of sorts between Perry Christie, the Leader of the Opposition and Tommy Turnquest, the Leader designate of the FNM on Sunday last sponsored by Island FM Radio.  Island is the station owned by former Foreign Minister Charles Carter.  The winner was clearly Perry Christie.  Tommy Turnquest was out of his league with scripted answers and the inability to ad lib.  The best moment most people thought was when Mr. Turnquest tried to pin the issue of corruption on Mr. Christie.  Mr. Christie shot back that he was surprised that Mr. Turnquest could accuse any one of corruption when Mr. Turnquest's Prime Minister has him and Dion Foulkes, the Minister of Education under investigation for corruption.  Mr. Turnquest said nothing.
    We think that Mr. Christie needs to take off the gloves against these fellows.  For one, he should have reminded Mr. Turnquest how his father in his capacity as an attorney made his money off of Robert Vesco, the swindler of hundreds of millions of dollars from investors across the globe.  'Nuff said.

    Hubert Ingraham, oh yes, you know who he is, the lame duck Prime Minister.  Come out come out wherever you are.  We can’t see him or hear him.  Last week he went down to Mexico to talk about poverty with the world’s big wigs.  But what authority or legitimacy does he have to represent us abroad on anything?  He is a washed up disgrace.  As a footnote, the FNM announced last week that he had been ratified as their candidate for North Abaco.  But you can’t hear a word from him.  The FNM, like Gore did to Clinton, are distancing themselves from him day by day.  Suddenly the man who had all the big mouth has nothing at all to say.
    What we will take a bet on is that the FNM fellows like Dion, Allen or Turnquest will say something that will just absolutely infuriate this man and he, like the madman he is, will come out with both guns blazing.  Dion Foulkes, the Deputy Leader designate, came perilously close on the radio programme Jones and Company when he was interviewed last Sunday.  He almost called Hubert Ingraham a liar for saying that the contracts that he gave out at the Ministry of Education were given out as a result of favoritism.  But he held back.  But for us it’s only a matter of time before they do something to cheese poor old Hubert off.

    Juanianne Dorsett, the sitting FNM MP for the Fox Hill constituency, officially opened her headquarters last Saturday 23 March.  Can you imagine, a sitting MP who has gotten $1800 per month to keep a headquarters open in her constituency, now saying that she has to officially open her headquarters?  Things that make you go hmm!  She did it in the middle of a funeral for a popular Fox Hillian.  That was a mark of disrespect.  And she had hardly anyone there from Fox Hill.  She brought all her bigwig friends from the FNM.  They didn’t have much to say.  I almost felt a little sorry for them and was going to stop by to get some potato salad and fried chicken but thought better of it at the last minute.  But Mrs. Dorsett had plenty to say at the FNM’s rally at the Seagrape Shopping Centre on Thursday 21 March.  She claimed that this Senator calls her name so much that she thought that I had a crush on her.  This is interesting.  You see, she used to sit beside me in the Senate, and she did have some rather shapely legs.  The bottom line though is that she had nothing to say about what she will do for Fox Hill.  We continue to work and work and work.  That’s what we are doing.

    Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham has said that he will dissolve the House of Assembly on Wednesday 3 April and the election will be held on 2 May.  That’s fine.  Lets get it on.  The Parliamentary Commissioner Errol Bethel says that there is a record number of registered voters on the rolls and those who are on the rolls as of 2 April will be allowed to vote in the coming general election.  The Commissioner said that the number of registered voters today exceeds the total of 129,000 in 1997 and now stands over 141,000.  We encourage everyone to vote, we encourage students to come home to vote.  Every vote counts.

    The Progressive Liberal Party’s Leader Perry Christie travelled to Governor Harbour, Eleuthera for a political rally in that constituency on Friday 22 March.  It was hugely successful with hundreds coming from all parts of the island.  The principal speakers beside the Leader were Damian Gomez and Oswald Ingraham, the PLP's candidates for the two Eleuthera constituencies.  To show you how excited the people of Eleuthera were about this whole event, droves of people went to Eleuthera for the rally from Nassau.  Our friend Donna Petty was present and accounted for.  Thanks to Paul Simmons for his help to us and his hospitality while there.  Kendal Demeritte, the columnist and this Senator went there for the rally.

    The Tribune ran an apology for the Nicki Kelly column of Tuesday 26 March.  In it Mrs. Kelly said that Ed Fields, the PR man at Sun and the brother-in-law of Tommy Turnquest, donated $500 to Cynthia ‘Mother’ Pratt's constituency headquarters rebuilding fund only after he became aware of allegations being made against him concerning the gift of landscaping equipment to Mount Moriah constituent John Brown (see story above).  The Tribune apologized saying that it was satisfied that Mr. Fields’ gift to Mother Pratt was entirely spontaneous with no ulterior motive, and that he was unaware of Mr. Brown’s allegations at the time of the gift to Mother Pratt.
    Now, we do not believe that The Tribune can say that Mr. Fields donation was spontaneous. We believe quite the contrary.  The gift was a calculated decision to make political brownie points for himself and his brother-in-law.  If it were otherwise, Mr. Fields would have kept silent about the gift.  Mr. Fields has been involved in the FNM’s smear campaign.  His work is in great danger of costing at least three persons their livelihoods, a fact in which he seems to take great delight.  To this extent, what he is doing is highly dangerous.  What is particularly despicable about the $500 is that he sought to bring it up in a desperate attempt to defend himself when he was accused of using a lawnmower to buy votes.  Like Senator Tanya McCartney of the FNM, Mr. Fields, also an FNM, both want publicity at the expense of Mother Pratt.  This was to show magnanimous behavior but it was instead behavior deliberately designed for the propaganda purposes of the FNM.  We see through them all.

    During the past week, a group of young professionals met with both Tommy Turnquest, the Leader designate of the FNM and Perry Christie, the leader of the Opposition.  They reported that the meeting with Tommy was less frank than that of the PLP’s leader who seemed to have a better grasp of the facts and the direction in which the country needs to be headed.  But one professed to be profoundly disillusioned by both meetings, saying that he felt a little hopeless, even though he would be voting PLP.
    Just a word to all, politics is not a zero sum game, nor is it a game of a perfect outcome.  It is about alternatives.  It is about how we in our time, and with the facts we have before us can best engage our minds for the forward movement of our country.  The choice of the PLP is not a choice out of sentimentality for me, nor is a choice out of pique.  It is simply the best place to be at this time in the best interest of the country.  As a voter, once you accept that and realize that you continue to have role to play even after an election, then perhaps the disillusionment won’t be so strong.  And so we urge you this time to vote PLP.

Back To The Top

    Remember all those hard words of the Central Bank that the private banks and trusts in the Bahamas must find a foreign partner with which to attach themselves by 12 June or else they must close down.  Remember all that stuff issued by the Central Bank that those banks and trusts that were complaining about the Central Bank’s demand must put a lid on any public commentary.  Well The Tribune’s business section now reports in its Thursday 28 March edition that the Central Bank has backed off.
    Dr. Peter Maynard, President of the Bar Association, said to The Tribune: “It’s absurd and very extraordinary to require Bahamians to place any limitations on the choice of investment partners.”  While the Central Bank has been silent on what the hell they were doing, Dr. Maynard says that what the Central Bank was trying to do was to avoid having to regulate these private trust companies.  What they wanted was to get a foreign partner in each trust company so that the foreign Government in an OECD country where the partner was domiciled would then be responsible for regulating the bank.  If the bank passed muster with that foreign country then, it would be okay with the Central Bank of The Bahamas.  That’s an interesting bit of laziness.

    The Nassau Institute, the right wing think tank, held a symposium at the Hilton British Colonial on Tuesday 26 March about the so-called harmful tax initiative of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).  Dan Mitchell, senior fellow at Washington’s Heritage Foundation, told The Tribune that the harmful tax initiative of the OECD was riddled with hypocrisy.  He said that the Government was living in fantasy land if they believed that OECD was going to change its tune because Switzerland was not going to sign on to the initiative.  I agree with him.  If you read last week's column on this subject (click here) you will see that the so called commitment to a level playing field that the Bahamas Government claims it got from the OECD in exchange for our sovereign capitulation is foolishness.  It is unenforceable.  What we need is a Government that will simply stand up for the way of life in The Bahamas, the absence of regulation and abiding belief in the right to privacy.


    The United States Ambassador Richard Blankenship has donated four computers; two each to the reform schools—the one for boys and the one for girls.  That's fine and dandy and the kids need the computers, but so far the aid of the United States to this country has been rather paltry.  We are again in the process of being swamped by drug criminals.  There is a need for significant expenditure in the Royal Bahamas Defence Force, to give it an air wing and a properly equipped sea operation.  What is needed is some assistance in that area. The computers we can take care of or at least manage.  It is the big-ticket items that are a problem.  Not to be ungrateful for the gift but it’s a question of need and priority. Guardian photo of US Ambassador Blankenship at the Simpson Penn School for Boys by Patrick Hanna.


    Sidney Poitier was born in Miami to Bahamian parents and shares his US citizenship with that of The Bahamas.  He was awarded a special Oscar a lifetime achievement at the Oscars last Sunday in Hollywood California. This is added to the Oscar that he won in 1963 for his performance in the movie ‘Lilies of the Field’.  He is The Bahamas’ non-resident Ambassador to Japan.  We are proud of him and his rise from humble beginnings as a boy in Cat Island to where he is today.  You ought to read his biography the Measure of a Man.  But Bahamians have a checkered connection with him, a love hate relationship with him.  They feel that he does not give enough back to the country even as they love the acclaim that he has brought to us.  But, be that as it may, congratulations.  It is a wonderful achievement. AP photos from the Tribune show Sir Sidney with his new Oscar at left and at right with his wife Joanna Shimkus and daughters Sydney, left and Anika, right.

    It is now just about two years after Texaco in one of its’ most illogical and bloodyminded decisions made Doyle Fox its’ Harbour Bay dealer bite the dust.  There was nothing wrong with the profits they made at the station.  The Texaco manager, a professed born again Christian, just didn't like Mr. Fox's attitude.  And so a wholly profitable operation for Texaco was shut down for more acceptable dealers.  No one could see the point of our argument at the time. The contracts of the oil companies are contracts of slavery and should be outlawed.  The Smith brothers took over the station.  They are good people.  But within a year there were signs that the contract was too onerous.  They started running out of gas at the station.  First on weekdays, then at nights and now the whole station is shut down.  No word on why.
    One hopes that the PLP will be able to revisit this situation.  The contracts are unconscionable bargains, designed to get around the prohibition by the Government of foreign oil companies owning gas stations.  So they make it impossible for the dealer to make it, without the slave contracts that they impose.  And yet each month, someone else ventures into the field thinking that they can make it.  Some are lucky, but Texaco now has two shuttered stations: one on Wulff Road, the other on East Bay Street.  No word on when they will open.  The lesson is that Texaco should have left Doyle Fox alone.  He would have still been running a profitable station for them and for him, and the public would not now be inconvenienced by their selfish decision that has led to the unavailability of the services and the products that consumers need.

    The Carifta Games, one of the few successes of the Caribbean Community (Caricom), UWI is another, began in Nassau, with The Bahamas as the host with official ceremonies on Friday 29 March. The last time we hosted the games, The Bahamas had a different Government.  Prime Minister Sir Lynden Pindling was alive and in his last year in office.  No doubt when those games were held, the party in power thought that it would provide a boost for their fortunes to have this international competition held just before the election.  So is it any wonder the Free National Movement has the same thing in mind?  It called the election to be sure to take advantage of the boost that the games might give.  Unfortunately for them, the games won’t help them.  Even as they planned the games, the FNM cheesed off the sports establishment by waiting until the last minute to fix the Queen Elizabeth Sports stadium and the Thomas A. Robinson Track.  The Tribune reports that since 1992, The Bahamas despite its success internationally at the Olympics and at the World Championships, has declined as a junior sports power.  The Jamaicans have overwhelmed us.  What that means is that there are not as many more Avard Moncurs and Debbie Fergusons in the works.  Let’s hope that they are wrong.  The daughter of the editor of this site Alana was able to qualify both for swimming and for track, so we are pulling for her at 14 years old.  The Christian Council did a bah humbug when they issued a statement saying that they were unhappy about the games starting on Good Friday at the end of Holy Week.  Desmond Bannister who is the head of the Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations was quick to say no disrespect was meant.  He is of course quite sensitive over these matters being the FNM’s candidate for the Carmichael constituency and in a real dogfight with the PLP’s John Carey.  We wish all the athletes success at the games. Tribune file photo of Alana Dillette finishing in Grand Bahama Conchman Triathlon, October 2001.

    It was at a Rotary function to honour Sir Durward Knowles, that the public got a taste of the bitterness that the former Governor General still harbours against the PLP.  It causes him to speak unkind and illogical words.  In his presentation some two weeks ago, the former GG Sir Orville Turnquest and father to the FNM Leader designate Tommy Turnquest said that he wanted Sir Durward Knowles picture put up in the arrivals hall at the Nassau International Airport.  All the other Olympians are there.  Sir Durward is a white Bahamian and all the other Olympians are Black.  Sir Orville added that he hoped the other side, meaning the PLP, did not win the General Election because they would probably tear it down.
    Now that is absolute foolishness.  It is a perpetuation of that kind of political nonsense that continues to emanate from that quarter.  A former Governor General, like a sitting Governor General, should refrain from all political commentary.  Further, Sir Durward Knowles became a richer man than he ever was under a PLP Government and there was never any bar to his full participation in the public life of The Bahamas under the PLP administration save his own wish or desire.


    The Fox Hill Branch of the PLP held the second annual Lenten Tea as a fund raiser at the home of Jan and Derek Davis ‘Casa Davis’ in Yamacraw Beach Estates.  It was very well attended.  The principle speaker at the event and special guest of honour was PLP candidate Allyson Maynard Gibson.  She is also the daughter of Sir Clement and Lady Maynard, former Deputy Prime Minister of the country and his wife.  Claudette Allens and Hope Curry entertained the guests with their comedy routines. Pictured from left are Agatha Marcelle, PLP candidate; Mrs. Gibson; Senator Mitchell; Mrs. Jan Davis; Mrs. & Rev'd. Dr. Carrington Pinder.

    The Minister of Transport C.A. Smith announced this week that the law making it mandatory to wear seat belts and to have a toddler in a car seat will come into force in three months time.

    The Free National Movement thinks of R.M. Bailey Park as their holy ground.  The PLP outshone them at a rally two weeks ago when we covered it with people.  Now the PLP wants to go there again but they have reportedly discovered that the FNM has booked up all available dates for the park.  This is something that should not be allowed by the Government to stand.  The Park should not be monopolized by any party.  Some dates ought to be allocated for the PLP and some to any other party that wishes to use the park.  It cannot be right that a public facility is monopolized by one party.  To launch its campaign, the PLP will head to Clifford Park on Wednesday 3 April.

    When St. Paul wrote the words in that headline from his famous treatise on charity from First Corinthians, he had a good grasp of how sometimes we are unclear about what the future holds.  We can only make out where we are headed in the most murky way.  That is what we see as 2 May, Election Day in The Bahamas approaches.  To be sure we know that it will be a watershed.  There is a definite change coming of some kind but how and to what degree?  The past five years, the past 27 years of political activism for this writer almost certainly will come to some kind of crescendo.  Most of the people that I have started with are still here with me and I side by side with them.  Kendal Demeritte is one; Al Dillette is another.  We have passed through various guises and others have joined the team and we have made progress.  Calvin Brown is one that we think of in that connection.  We have also had setbacks.  Many have dropped by the wayside.  They could not take the heat of battle.  Some were summer soldiers.  Some through no fault of their own are no longer with us.  Among those absent brothers and sisters are Paul Drake, Mark Beckford, both my parents, the Cooper sisters Kathy and Karen.  Some proved treacherous users.  Took the money and ran, and then sought to be insulting in the process knowing full well that their insults were motivated by the guilty consciences of thieves.  And it has not stopped, as an act occurred that one would not have expected at this late stage from one who has journeyed so long and so hard.  But the task is to soldier on.  Election Day will be a day that comes and goes, but St. Paul’s words through a glass darkly will prevail.  Have a happy Easter at the start of the swim season in The Bahamas.

Dedicated this week to Bahamians who feel they should be first in The Bahamas….

Movement On Labour Issues At FCP
Workers Given Guarantees - After more than three months of the issue being publicized on this website, there is some movement at the Freeport Container Port (FCP) for forty Bahamians who stood to lose their jobs in an attempt to put a Bahamian engineering firm out of business.  The Bahamian firm Motherwell Bridge Bhicam is contracted for all the maintenance at FCP, but was faced with the company threatening to internalize its functions beginning in April.  That has now been extended for one month while the parties engage in further discussions.   Sources among the affected workers say they walked off the job this past Thursday "because we had no guarantees and we've performed well for FCP".  The workers have now been promised that they will retain their salaries and tenure and that no one will lose their jobs "if FCP decides to go through with internalizing the maintenance functions".

Belated Political Involvement - The FNM and its Government have finally begun to move on the issue of Bahamians being abused and put out of business by the Freeport Container Port (FCP).  Marco City FNM MP and Ambassador for Investment David Thompson is reported to have issued a statement welcoming the removal of certain FCP executives seen as obstacles to progress in the difficult labour issues at the harbour.  Thompson is further reported to have said that the work permit of one manager, who is seen by the community as heavy handed and unethical, would not be renewed.  Hutchison Whampoa, the international conglomerate that owns the Freeport Harbour is said to have been disturbed by worsening community relations in Grand Bahama and moved to put in place different executives to solve the problems.  So far, Hutchison managers have embarrassed the international company, which operates successfully all over the world by maintaining a low profile in executing its global strategy.  The latest manager sent by the company has given assurances to the Department of Labour that the matters will be resolved.

FCP Salaries To Rise? - Bahamian labour experts say that now that the Freeport Container Port (FCP) has guaranteed the highly paid Bhicam workers that their salaries will remain, union workers at FCP will demand that union salaries be correspondingly raised.  "If they persist with this plan to put Bhicam out of business and hire all its people," said our expert, "it will certainly mean that they will have further unrest amongst the union rank and file now employed there."  Sources say that FCP union employees are currently paid at a much lower rate than workers at the Bahamian firm Bhicam, so "It would only be a matter of time before union leader Hurye Bodye will demand that the salary scale be uniform across the board."  More than two hundred people are now directly employed at the Freeport Container Port.

Resorts at Bahamia - Disgraceful & Continuing Saga -
The Big Con Game - Freeport was told that the new owners of Resorts at Bahamia needed the public road between their properties for a man-made beach, without which the hotels could never be viable.  We were told that this 'beach' would be wondrous to behold, a veritable wonder of the world.  Now it turns out that the 'beach' is just a swimming pool and that the real reason Sunrise highway was stolen from the public is for the construction of timesharing units and condominiums for sale.  Further, reports are that C.A. Smith, the then Minister of Tourism knew all about it, yet was and remains one of the biggest supporters of Resorts at Bahamia.

Staff Paid Late - Resorts at Bahamia workers were kept waiting for their paycheques this past Thursday.  The cheques are normally ready first thing in the morning, but staff didn't get paid until after two pm.  Contractors claim they were not paid at all that day and top-level executives were said to have "just disappeared".  No word on why any of this happened, but reports of money woes at the properties persist.

Experts From Abroad - It has become the laughing stock of the community.  There for any and everyone to see.  Expensive doors and locks at Resorts at Bahamia's Tower hotel 'Lemon Peel' restaurant, hung upside down.  According to one Bahamian master carpenter "any one of my rough-work assistants could have done better... and this is what they brought these so-called Vietnamese experts here for?  It turns out that you'all were right all along and they are nothing more than cheap labour to cheat Bahamians out of work."

Night Auditor Reinstated - Last week we reported on the Resorts at Bahamia night auditor who was suspended without pay for speaking up when she was verbally abused by a foreign supervisor.  Now comes word that the lady was reinstated and her pay restored after the belated intervention of her embarrassed FNM representative.  "They know all this stuff been going on since these people took over, but they just wouldn't come," said one hotel employee.

Don't Touch Them Up - The senior Bahamian engineer on the Resorts at Bahamia renovation project is reported to have "almost come to blows" with the same foreign supervisor responsible for the night auditor's (see above) suspension without pay.  Construction workers on the site witnessed the set too between the Bahamian engineer and the foreign supervisor: "Don't let that man come to this country and talk to you like that!" said one, "You don't have to take that from him" said another, "You want us to touch him up and teach him some manners?"  The quick thinking Bahamian quieted the situation and averted what could have become an unfortunate melee.  This report is typical of happenings at Resorts at Bahamia.

Labour Department Weighs In - This past week in Grand Bahama, a spokesman for the Ministry of Labour offered the opinion that Resorts at Bahamia needs to put its foreign supervisors and management staff through an orientation programme to sensitize them to the culture of The Bahamas and that a lot of their labour problems would go away.  Bahamas Hotel, Catering & Allied Workers Union President Pat Bain was quick to respond by saying that an orientation isn't going to help if foreign managers and supervisors "come here believing that all Bahamians are stupid".  Well said, Mr. Bain.

Other News
Secret Bahamasair Deal? - Persistent and widespread reports re circulating about a secret deal to licence a private airline replacing Bahamasair.  Aviation Minister C.A. Smith and the FNM are said to have already approved in principle the licence should the FNM win the upcoming election.  Reports say the partners in the proposed venture read like a who's who of the Free National Movement.  Minister Smith needs to report to the Bahamian people on this and the promises of openness, transparency and accountability on which his Government came to power.  Could it be that these 'partners' are some of the same people who were got $135, 000 of Bahamasair's money, or perhaps this is why Bahamasair is being starved of operational cash.

Who Has Drug Money? - "The FNM should be the last ones to talk about politicians receiving drug money!" This quote from one of a group of FNM political observers in Freeport who are frequent readers of this site.  Members of the group were embarrassed by their party's baseless attempt this past week to drug smear the PLP (see story above).  In what may have been an attempt to head off a stiff PLP response, members of the group called News From Grand Bahama to share a list of FNM names past and present involved in drugs.  "A good litmus test" they said, is "how many FNM candidates and or generals can visit the United States without diplomatic passports and come back out of that country?"  Freeport - 'FNM Country'  - is awash in illegal drugs.  One only needs to see the many expensive motorbikes, 'go fast' boats and the flashy cars and trucks; all owned by people with no visible means of income.  The group of FNM observers lamented that their party in Government seems to do nothing to curb young people in the drug culture, "...but when grammy takes her asue money to the bank she is treated like a criminal.  There's something wrong."  Things that make you go hmmm!


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