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Opinions Last Updated: Apr 17, 2017 - 9:13:09 PM
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Opinions
The State of (Human) Rights in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas in 2017 - Apr 17, 2017 - 9:07:27 PM

The Israelites, the Bible states, wondered forty years in the desert. It’s not that they were physically lost, for they knew where they were headed, and knew how to get there. The stars by night and the sun by day were the only GPS they needed. And they were fortified by manna in the desert.

But woefully, that nation of people was mentally and psychologically lost. Leaving the land of enslavement, after coming to the realization that as a people of value and dignity, they no longer cherished the ungodly treatment meted out to them. Yet, having subjected themselves for so long to this bondage, they were infused with the consciousness of enslavement at the very core of minutest parts of their being.
By Divine grace and a genetic transformation, they came to realize that no entry into the promised land was possible until every iota of mental slavery was exorcised from the very foundation of their being...
Opinions
"Spying Bill process. Another Abuse of Government Power?" - Mar 5, 2017 - 12:03:29 PM

The latest episode with the government attempting to pass legislation without public discussion or input, is yet another apparent abuse of power by this government.

Had Civil Society not raised eternal hell the government proposed passing the Bill without public consultation.

Now that government has backed down, I submit their action is simply to calm the waters so to speak, and will process the Bill anyway in whatever form they wish...
Opinions
Gilbert Morris: The GB (Port Area) Incentive Act is anti-Incentive - Feb 28, 2017 - 11:29:58 PM

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The Hawksbill Creek Agreement (HCA) is the finest Development Agreement in the world. I know, since I grew up under the agreement; wrote nearly all my undergraduate law papers on this agreement and wrote my first economics paper - again - on the HCA.

I understand that the government wants to facilitate economic growth in Freeport, and I believe this is their true noble desire.

However, the GB (Port Area) Incentive Act is absolutely the wrong way to go:

THERE ARE THREE MAJOR PROBLEMS AMONGST OTHERS:

A. It is wrong in Constitutional terms as the devolution of Sovereign concessions under the Hawksbill Creek Agreement was not a benefit to or intended for the Port
Opinions
Rick Lowe: Government Acting Immorally Over Tax Compliance Certificates - Aug 24, 2016 - 3:24:40 PM

During the last Budget presentation the Government snuck a provision through that businesses would have to apply for a Tax Compliance Certificate in order to be paid by them for goods and services.

In essence, if your taxes are not paid, the government will not pay you.

Seems like a reasonable proposition until you make application and find out that if a courier company imported something on your behalf and has not paid the import taxes you cannot get paid by the government. And it doesn’t matter if you paid your courier company...
Opinions
Patricia Glinton-Meicholas on the 2016 Bahamas Gender Equality Referendum - Jul 2, 2016 - 6:49:01 PM

On June 7, 2016, you voted against yourselves, your children and your children’s children. That says it all about you and your regression from the brave, forward thinking of the Bahamian suffragettes. You chose to believe that Eve and her female offspring were cursed in Eden, not just to bear the pains of childbirth, but to remain forever inferior to men, subject to their abuse. Shame on you.

The ‘Christian’ Nation: While The Bahamas is a church-going nation, most Bahamians are not Christians, not followers of the loving Christ that I cling to. Most of my Bahamian people...
Opinions
Op-Ed: Supporting Innovation and Entrepreneurship through the Modernization of Government Services - Jun 30, 2016 - 11:30:18 PM

In this digital age, more and more governments are making the shift to online services to promote the expediency of the delivery of services, as well as to facilitate growth for business stakeholders. From the perspective of the Government of The Bahamas, modernizing government services is essential, especially if we are to tap into the potential of young Bahamians, our future generation.

I believe that with the right conditions, talented young Bahamians are poised to change the world. Improvements in the capacity of government to deliver services will not only support innovation and entrepreneurship, but will also increase productivity and create cost savings for businesses, simplify citizen interactions with government, reduce the cost of the public sector and increase government revenues.
Opinions
Bahamas Olympic swimmer on the Gender Equality vote - Jun 10, 2016 - 1:55:44 AM


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The Bahamian people have voted NO to the gender equality bill. America just nominated their first female presidential nominee while 20 minutes from Miami, we voted NO to gender equality. Let’s face it, the vote YES campaign underestimated the power of social media, they underestimated the distrust the people have in Prime Minister Perry Christie and the current PLP government, they underestimated the amount of fear mongering that would come from the extreme religious and homophobic ideologues.

The vote YES campaign tried to take the high road and educate the public on the bills to raise awareness so Bahamians can make an informed decision. On the other hand, the vote NO campaign simply preyed on the fears of the ignorant and the super religious; the quintessential Donald Trump method...

Opinions
Fred Smith: We Reap What We Sow - Jun 9, 2016 - 11:05:33 PM

The No, No, No and No Vote was unfortunate, but it is a reflection that as a nation, we reap what we sow.

Over the last few years, Fred Mitchell and the PLP and their goons like Keod Smith and Peter Nygard have really whipped up hate and anti-foreign sentiment in the country, (which the PLP has always kept alive and well to use when it suits them) against Haitians , Cubans and Jamaicans, Canadian Bruno Rufa, the manager from memories in Freeport, Sarkis Izmirlian and Louis Bacon; and even against Bahamians such as Fred Smith, Joseph Darville and Rev. C B Moss etc, dressing up black Bahamians in KKK hoods brandishing burning crosses and parading them up and down on Bay Street hurling abuse, bile and xenophobic venom. And Jerome Fitzgerald, Fred Mitchel and Leslie Miller raping our privacy and having their fun ridiculing civil society in Parliament under the guise of privilege...
Opinions
Top 3 Outlandish statements from Dame Sawyer that should really scare you - Jun 3, 2016 - 6:02:50 PM

Dame Joan Sawyer is a highly accomplished attorney in the Bahamas, once serving as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. For that I have no doubt she is very learn-ed (as the lawyers like to say), and has had to overcome many obstacles – some of them without a doubt because she is a woman – to reach her heights of accomplishment. However, her public statements concerning the upcoming constitutional referendum reflect a disturbing level prejudice and insularity that cannot go unanswered, and should diminish her stature in the eyes of those who believe in human rights and equality for all. On reflection, I must say I am quite relieved Dame Sawyer is now retired; though she may still be influential, I am satisfied that the future does not belong to her. Last week she delivered remarks on the referendum at a Bar Association event. The video is making its rounds online. Though she said very little about the actual referendum (more on that later), her statements were fully loaded. So my first comments respond to the Top 3 Outlandish Statements that Should Really Scare You...
Opinions
Terrance Gape: The Bridge to nowhere - May 6, 2016 - 11:06:19 AM

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We are this week celebrating the opening of the Sir Jack Hayward Bridge which represents a $4.3 million investment by the families and Hutchison (DevCo) to the infrastructure of Freeport and provides access over the Grand Lucayan Waterway to the eastern two-thirds of the Island, which access had primarily been provided these past 50 years by the Casuarina Bridge, a five-minute detour from the new Sir Jack Hayward Bridge.

The eastern two-thirds of Grand Bahama have changed little in the past 60 years with a population of 4,500 (approximately) in five quiet settlements stretching from New Freetown to Sweetings Cay.

Sir Jack justified his five-year campaign (with Hutchison?) to have this bridge built because he said the Casuarina Bridge was old and weak and could fall down and he was concerned that the poor “blighters” who lived over there would have to swim across to get to Freeport, or (as some believe) was it to reward his construction friend with a multi-million-dollar contract?

Opinions
Attorney Constance Mcdonald provides clarity on Gender Equality bills - May 5, 2016 - 1:52:16 PM

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In early April I was invited to address students of the College of The Bahamas Northern Campus on the Gender Equality Bills.

One of the young women a former student said to me Ms. Mcdonald can you provide a simple explanation of what the bills are about because most of the older persons like my parents have no understanding of what is going on. I promised her that I would try and simplify the bills so here goes.

The process of recognizing a woman as a person in her own right separate and apart from the man in her life began in 1888 with the passing of The Married Women
Opinions
What Does China Want From The Bahamas? - Apr 9, 2016 - 6:42:37 PM

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What China wants from The Bahamas? This is an essential question for those monitoring the implications and assessing the risk imposed on the nature of China's economic, social, and political engagement with the Commonwealth. There's a sustained perspective that China's growing presence in the region seeks to undermine the United States strategic position and influence in its hemisphere. China's incredibly ambitious foreign policy in The Bahamas and other Caribbean countries is Beijing continued efforts of improving its geostrategic significance unraveling its economic strength.

Since the founding of the New China in 1949, The Bahamas and China have enjoyed sustained high-level exchanges; stronger political mutual trust relished with closer cooperation...
Opinions
China's Growing Presence in The Bahamas - Mar 16, 2016 - 12:25:30 PM

Finding the silver lining in Chinese State Owned invested projects in The Bahamas continues to be shadowed by the perception and suspicions that exist around the country about China's growing presence in the Bahamian economy. The archipelagic nature of The Bahamian economy creates an environment of complex financial restraints which requires the government to subsidize economic growth with Foreign Direct Investment. The posture of the country's investment policies under successive governments rule the out the possibility of discriminatory policies that prohibit inbound investment from foreign countries. The elephant in the room isn't the strong-arming of Chinese State-Owned Enterprises in The Bahamas but rather their inability to grapple with the culture shock of doing business in the Caribbean region.
Opinions
The right to private property, beach access or not - Mar 13, 2016 - 11:24:24 AM

The recent spat about beach access by vendors on Paradise Island is an all to important reminder of the right to private property.

In my view, the Opposition parties, the FNM and DNA, were wrong to encourage a protest at the sight where the beneficial owner had their fenced in, which then incited the crowd to pull the fence down that blocked an access point point to Cabbage Beach.

Opinions
Pierre Dupuch: National Health Insurance and Rats - Feb 25, 2016 - 10:05:17 PM

As I travelled down the valley of life, I banked around a corner and smelled what appeared to be a decaying rat. As I went further, the smell increased and, low and behold, at the end of the valley there was indeed a dead rat, the proposed National Health Insurance plan.

At first I wondered why there was such a hell fired rush to provide something that the people already had - Universal health care. For many years, if a person could not afford private health care they went to the clinic. Granted the service was slow and the lines were long. But there was service and it was FREE...
Opinions
Op-ed: Discrimination, The Bahamian Political Crack - Feb 11, 2016 - 8:08:49 PM

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All that glitters is not gold. There is another, darker side to The Bahamas. As a people, Bahamians can be kind, appreciative, welcoming and gracious. But they can also be hateful, abusive and vicious. How is this schizophrenic national personality explained?

This paper is a commentary by Frederick Smith QC arising from Professor of Anthropology Dr Bertin M. Louis's perspicacious lecture on the Marginalization of Haitian Migrants in The Bahamas, and persons of Haitian Heritage.

The lecture by Professor Louis can be found on YouTube, and I urge watching it. I found it to be stimulating and thought provoking...
Opinions
Carey Leonard: on the Hawksbill Creek Agreement Extension‏ - Feb 11, 2016 - 1:07:42 AM

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The Prime Minister’s communication made on 3rd March 2016 to the House of Assembly on the status of the Hawksbill Creek Agreement is, in many ways, a milestone as it sets out, for the “public at large”, the issues and objectives that our Government deems important as we move the Hawksbill Creek Agreement forward.

Transparency in negotiations, such as the extension and review of certain provisions, of the Hawksbill Creek Agreement, which affect the livelihood of the tens of thousands of Residents and Licensees of the Port Area, is critical...
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The State of (Human) Rights in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas in 2017
"Spying Bill process. Another Abuse of Government Power?"
Gilbert Morris: The GB (Port Area) Incentive Act is anti-Incentive
Rick Lowe: Government Acting Immorally Over Tax Compliance Certificates
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