Categorized | National News

FNM Celebrates First Victory

It was a bittersweet day for members of the Free National Movement (FNM) on Sunday who were forced to celebrate 20 years of first being elected to the Government of The Bahamas, without party Chairman Charles Maynard.

The party held a church service at the Good Samaritan Kingdom Ministries celebrating the party’s August 19, 1992 victory in breaking 25 years of Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) rule.

To mark the occasion FNM Leader Hubert Minnis, Deputy Leader Loretta Butler Turner and former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham sent out a press release yesterday marking the party’s bittersweet milestone.

“Sadly, on this significant anniversary we mourn the untimely death of National Chairman Charles T. Maynard, former Member of Parliament for the Golden Isle Constituency and former Minister of Youth Sports and Culture,” Mr. Ingraham said. “Charlie Maynard represented the youthful and dedicated energy that has made the Free National Movement a wonderful reflection of the Bahamian spirit. Even as I salute the FNM, I also salute Charlie, and I acknowledge with deep gratitude all that he did for our party, my government and our country. It should not be lost on any of us that Charlie died on the job taking care of FNM business.”

On this anniversary Mr. Ingraham said he is pleased to send greetings to and commend the leadership of the FNM which continues to labour in the field to safeguard a free and democratic Bahamas for this and future generations.

“I am especially proud that because of the FNM’s victory in 1992 we were able to dismantle the culture of political intimidation and victimisation so prolific in The Bahamas prior to 1992,” he added. “Twenty years ago, the FNM asked the Bahamian people to use the power of their vote to make Election Day August 19, 1992, a day of rebirth and deliverance for our beloved Bahamaland.

“We promised we would provide responsive, accountable government in the sunshine. We promised that together the government and people of The Bahamas would pursue a people’s agenda to make life Better in The Bahamas for all Bahamians.”

And Mr. Ingraham said the Bahamian people responded, electing the FNM to government for 15 of the past 20 years.
During his speech, the FNM leader said Mr. Ingraham, becoming the country’s second prime minister played a crucial role in the party’s successes.

“On this day, twenty years ago, on August 19 1992, the FNM won the government for the first time in Bahamian history with Hubert Alexander Ingraham as our leader, making him the second prime minster of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas,” he said.

The Free National Movement has demonstrated tremendous successes over the years, too numerous for me to itemise at this time. We must re-dedicate ourselves to those great accomplishments which characterised our times in government and which have so clearly benefitted our Bahamas, and improved the quality of life for every Bahamian.”

A celebratory church service was also held at the Tabernacle Independent Baptist Church in Freeport, Grand Bahama which the FNM deputy leader attended.

“August 19th, 1992 was the beginning of an era of transformative, progressive governance. But the day, on which we first won office, was also the culmination of 25 years of struggle by so many, including those who sacrificed so much for our cause,” Mrs. Butler-Turner said.

“We remember then on this 20th anniversary our Founding Fathers and the many freedom fighters who endured through the storm. Even before we won office in 1992, the Free National Movement laboured to save democracy in this land. It was FNMs like our founding fathers Sir Cecil Wallace Whitfield, Maurice Moore, Warren Levarity and valiant FNM leaders like Garnet Levarity, C.A. Smith, J. M. Pinder, Neko Grant, Rev Lindsey Russell and David Thompson among many others here in Grand Bahama who helped saved democracy in The Bahamas. During three terms in office we have forever transformed our Bahamas for the better. Indeed it is the FNM which fulfilled many of the promises of majority rule which were abandoned by the PLP.”

The party said since the very beginning, core tenets of the party have included fair play and the fundamental right of citizens to access economic and social opportunity, education, adequate health care for all and support for the aged and disadvantaged, adding that the evidence is there to prove that they brought these things to fruition.

They also highlighted the party’s successes in television and telecommunications services freeing it from government monopoly and control; restoring the reputation of The Bahamas internationally and raising the country’s profile in regional and international agencies and organisations ratifying accession to international conventions and treaties concerning human rights, children’s rights, human trafficking, protection of the environment, control of the illicit trade in drugs, chemicals and psychotropic substances and weapons.

During its time the FNM boasts that they introduced local government, transformed the police and defence forces and departments of customs and immigration; reformed national laws, rationalising the customs tariff structure reducing both the number and levels of duty rates, strengthened our financial services sector; developed a modern container transshipment port in that city; expanded education and health plant since the 1960’s causing the construction 13 new primary and secondary schools.
Successes in culture, healthcare, Family Island development, dredging of the Nassau Harbour, building the new straw market, and beginning work on the road improvement project, were also highlighted.

“The FNM is grateful for the opportunity to serve the Bahamian people during its terms in office. On this the 20th anniversary of our first election to government I extend warm congratulations and heartfelt thanks to all those who contributed to our many lasting accomplishments,” Mr. Ingraham added.

“What was achieved for the betterment of all Bahamians was only possible because of the insight, talent and dedication of many. To each I say thank you for joining us on our march to making life better for all Bahamians. I look forward with great anticipation to the achievements of The Bahamas and the FNM during the next 20 years.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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