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Bahamian Politics Last Updated: Apr 24, 2018 - 4:12:52 PM

Leader of the Opposition responds to PM's press conference
Apr 23, 2018 - 5:20:13 PM

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From Office of the leader of the PLP responding to the press conference of the Prime Minister upon his return to the Bahamas:

It is clear that the Prime Minister is still mesmerized and full of excessive pride by the math of the general elections, 35 to 4, even as Bahamians have moved on from this equation and are now demanding concrete results.

He comes back home bloated with pride, showing no concern for real problems on the ground. It was amateur hour at the airport, repeating trite findings as though they were major accomplishments.

His explanation on corruption and why he embarrassed our country by bad mouthing the country abroad was silly. Instead of sticking to the facts, he made snide remarks about the PLP. He must understand that he is the Government now and he must perform for the Bahamian people. One way he can do that is to get his facts right. He claims without any evidence that losses due to corruption in our country are 500 million, more than twice as much as he said in Peru. He has nothing to back it up, just his say so. It is more ridiculous than before.

The tenor of the conference is that of a man full of himself and someone who has discovered religion. Suddenly he is the expert on corruption, GDP per capita, the loans that are granted to us overseas and why we can’t get concessionary lending and cooperation with Caricom leaders on climate change issues. There is nothing like a trip to open your eyes.

On the meeting with Mike Pence, the American Vice President, he said that he asked for help with assistance on the migration issues. That is not new.  The PLP made those requests as well and the US already provides assistance there. He said that the President of Panama promised to help with increasing flights to The Bahamas on Copa.  This is old ground. The reason Copa has not increased flights is because the traffic does not bear it. They told us when we can increase the traffic, they will increase the flights. We remind the FNM government that the US has concerns about Copa coming here because they say Panama is considered a link in the smuggling trail.

He said that he met with Theresa May, the British PM and she confirmed that the British are reopening their embassy here.  This has nothing to do with his Government’s actions but rather the expectation that the British have. When they exit the European Union (BREXIT), they can expand their trade opportunities with the Commonwealth as a substitute.

Our takeaway is that nothing new came out of any of these meetings substantively. This is the same information which the previous administration knew and explained to the public which the FNM in Opposition described as a lie. They said the PLP was deceiving the people and keeping secrets.

To illustrate, his explanation on concessionary loans because of The Bahamas high GDP per capita demonstrates our point. Again this is something the PLP explained over and again to the public. The Prime Minister did not seem to know that both the US and Japan had agreed when the PLP was in office that they would not oppose concessionary loans to us on environmental and renewable energy projects.

What was amusing was his explanation for the size of his delegation. This is obviously his Achilles heel. The press conference was held in the same room that the former administration held its press conferences when they returned home and reported every time to the Bahamian people. He says that the public will accept what he is doing on travel because they have access to all the information now.

 Under the PLP, the public always had access to the information.

What they do not have now is a foolish opposition party like the FNM was in opposition to the PLP that touted lies in the face of obvious truths.

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