Categorized | National News

Bannister Defends Minnis

Despite the Progressive Liberal Party’s (PLP) claim that support for and confidence in Free National Movement (FNM) Leader Dr. Hubert Minnis are “waning by the day” FNM Senator Desmond Bannister says his leader will continue to get his support.

In fact, he gave Dr. Minnis top marks for his performance as Opposition leader.

“I support Dr. Minnis as leader of the Free National Movement. I think the country can see that what he has done in just over a year as leader in Opposition has made a tremendous difference in our country,” he said.

“Bahamians don’t want other people coming to our country and being abused. We cherish the way we treat people; we are a hospitable people and so for him to expose what happened to the Cuban detainees is something I’m very proud of. I’m proud of the way he led the Opposition to a referendum, which was really a visionless exercise. I’m proud of the other things that he has done as leader in parliament. I’m proud of the fact that he has taken this on as a full-time job. I think that those are the signs of a leader and he continues to develop as a leader; I think that’s very important.”

Several months ago, Dr. Minnis revealed details of a report that he claims prove that Defence Force officers severely abused Cuban detainees.

Many people saw the revelation as a major coup for the FNM.

PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts was not one of them.

“Dr. Minnis is well advised that creating a circus outside of parliament and siding with those who would harm this country’s reputation in order to create confusion and to distract from the people’s business are not the qualities of effective leadership,” he said in a press statement yesterday.

“Unless and until there is a paradigm shift in his leadership style, Bahamians should not be surprised if this disaffection within the FNM continues.”

But, Mr. Bannister says Dr. Minnis has demonstrated great leadership ability.

Ever since he took over the party’s leadership reins from Hubert Ingraham, comparisons have followed.

Mr. Bannister does not believe the comparisons are fair.

“Mr. Ingraham, before he became leader of the Free National Movement, had spent many years in cabinet, many years as chairman of a party, he had spent time grooming himself for leadership. So, when he became leader of the Free National Movement he brought with him all of that experience. So, it is unfair to compare him with Dr. Minnis, who finds himself in the position of being leader after one parliamentary term,” he said.

“Dr. Minnis has to grow in the position and he has shown he has the ability to grow in the position and so you can’t expect him overnight to be a Hubert Ingraham. What you have to do is work with him and ensure that he grows as leader and there are persons within the Free National Movement and within this country who want to see that happen and are working to see that happen.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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