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Bahamian Politics Last Updated: Feb 6, 2017 - 2:32:04 PM

NDP Calls on Government to Return Evicted Residents to Cheshire Home
By National Development Party
May 31, 2010 - 3:45:28 PM

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Nassau, Bahamas - “Cheshire Home” which is situated on Dolphin Drive, in the western district, on the island of New Providence was established by the family of Rotary Clubs in The Bahamas in the late 1980s.  The Home is the first and only residential, disable-friendly complex so designed and built in The Bahamas, from which disabled adults have benefited.  It was publically confirmed in recent months on a Talk Show by Melanie Griffin, the Minister in the former Christie Administration, who was responsible for disability interests, that the home is now owned by the government.  Having met with and seen the restrictive conditions in which the evicted men now live, and in light of the fact that Cheshire Home is to this very day, still closed down, The National Development Party (NDP) calls for and fully supports the return of Jerome Thompson, Jervaisian Stuart, Kenneth Storr and Shawn flowers to that Dolphin Drive facility.  

June 1st, 2005 was the date in history when the immediate past residents of Cheshire Home had been shut up in that facility and subsequently forced out.  Consequently, today’s date makes five years exactly since that most unfortunate experience had been visited on the last four residents of the home.  The NDP cries shame on both the Ingraham and Christie Administrations that from June 2005 to June, 2010, not a single thing was accomplished to re-open Cheshire Home.  The National Development Party therefore expresses full confidence in the interest and ability of the immediate past residents of that home, based on their very comprehensive proposal for the acquisition and operation of that facility, that once given the chance, they will show themselves worthy of operating their former place of residence in the best interest of all who will benefit from their efforts.   

Information regarding the Charitable Trust is stipulated in a sworn affidavit which confirms and verifies the existence of the Trust which collectively, gives the residents of Cheshire Home the status of beneficiaries and as such, the legal right to be in that residential facility known officially during its operation as the Sir Durward Knowles Cheshire Home.  The Deed of Trust as stipulated in a sworn affidavit was seen in the Registrar General’s Department by the issuer of the affidavit.  As The NDP has been made to understand, regarding the function of such a trust, the trust technically still possesses-[ owns] the physical structure once known as Cheshire Home.  This is by virtue of the fact that the b eneficiaries-[residents] never signed away their beneficial rights to the Trust or to the home.  This information is also stipulated in a sworn affidavit, signed by each of the four immediate past residents of Cheshire Home.  

The assets of the trust in question as spoken to by one of the affidavits in our possession, which is said to be noted in the Deed of Trust, cannot be disposed of without the knowledge and consent of the beneficiaries-[the residents]. It has also been brought to the attention of The NDP via the affidavit sworn to by the private citizen, that the Deed of Trust was reposed in the Registrar General’s Department which was seen by him.  The NDP has learned from Jerome Thompson, who is one of the evicted residents and who is the Chairperson of the Disabled Person’s Association of The NDP, that several attempts had been facilitated by the immediate past residents to locate the deed of trust.  However and unfortunately, without success.  The National Development Party, in support of those disabled residents, who apparently have been victimized several times over regarding the closure of their home, therefore asks the following questions:  where is the Deed of Trust for the Cheshire Home Charitable Trust? The existence of which is clearly spoken to by the relevant affidavit.  Who are the established trustees?  As the evicted residents have sworn that they never signed away any of their beneficial rights, The NDP then asks, what legal documentation did the trustees have, authorizing them to close the home?  How much was Cheshire Home “sold” to the government for and who received those funds?  Who would have allegedly removed the Deed of Trust from the Registrar General’s Office?  And, how could such information be so vulnerable to be completely removed from the records of this government department?  

The Chairperson of The NDP’s Disabled Person’s Association advised the party that he and another of the evicted residents, Jervaisian Stuart last spoke with Minister Loretta Butler-Turner on November 11th, 2009 who is the Minister in the Ingraham Administration, responsible for disability interests.   It was during that time as confirmed by DPA Chairperson, Thompson, that this particular Minister had advised them that she was aware of the existence of the Cheshire Home Charitable Trust.  But as the Minister would have further advised according to Chairperson Thompson, she was made to understand that the trust went out of existence when Cheshire Home was sold to the government.  The NDP asks of the government and The Rotary Club. how could  Cheshire Home be sold by the trustees, when the stipulated beneficiaries of the trust as spoken to in the affidavit and directly reported to The NDP, never signed away their rights to the Charitable Trust?  The National Development Party understands that the trust was irrevocable and as such, cannot automatically go out of existence as a result of the sale and or transfer of any of its assets.  Such a trust dies a natural death-[ceases to exist] only in one of two ways: firstly, if all of the beneficiaries signed away their collective rights and as stipulated in their affidavit, the evicted residents state that as beneficiaries they never at any time or in any manner, signed away their rights to the Cheshire Home Charitable Trust:  secondly, the trust would cease only upon the death of the last remaining beneficiary.  The NDP is able therefore to independently state that as of the date of this article, the evicted residents are all still very much alive.  

The very sobering question that The National Development Party asks is this.  How as is noted in The Speech from The Throne, on Wednesday April 14th, can the Ingraham Administration in good conscience say that it intends to pass legislation regarding the rights of persons with disabilities in The Bahamas, when it has not yet effected the restoration of the beneficial rights of the evicted residents  of Cheshire Home?  How can the Ingraham Administration want to effect positive changes for persons with disabilities, when to date, it has refused to grant to Mr. John McFee of Regional Destination Management, the privilege of having a transportation franchise to provide ground transportation services for disabled persons on New Providence; both locals and tourists?  How can this governing administration honestly initiate such a lordable piece of legislation, but on the other hand as The NDP suspects, the Ingraham Administration seems to be aware of the existence of the Cheshire Home Charitable Trust that it hasn’t done anything yet, to correct.  Is the government simply showing blatant disregard for both the spirit and intent of the law of the land by allegedly participating in the violation of the beneficial rights of the immediate past residents of Cheshire Home?  

The NDP makes it abundantly clear that upon attaining the government in the country’s next general election, it will return the evicted residents to Cheshire Home.  Additionally, an NDP government administration will rightly and honestly extend to the entire community of persons with disabilities, the full respect as intelligent and capable persons who are able to effectively and properly determine and control their own destinies.

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