Categorized | National News

Mitchell Says Chairman in Cabinet Follows Tradition

PLP Chairman Fred Mitchell

By Keile Campbell
Journal Staff Writer

Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman and Member of Parliament (MP) for Fox Hill Fred
Mitchell, during his contribution in the House of Assembly on Monday, explained the
practical function of the chairman of the incumbent party serving in Parliament as something
that is traditional, with origins of this practice traced back to the UK.
He explained that there should be a cooperation between party policy and Cabinet decision-
“One of the reasons why the chairman of the Progressive Liberal Party sits in the Cabinet is
following a tradition in the United Kingdom where there chairman sits in the Cabinet so that
party and Cabinet are consonant and there’s able to be a synergy between the decision-
making of the Cabinet and the execution of policy through the political party, so this is not a
strange tradition,” Mitchell said.
“It is felt that if the house is actually managing its affairs: one, the constitutional theory of the
separation of powers is then embedded in our systems in practicality. And then, secondly, it
makes for the more efficient running of the business of the house.”
Mitchell’s comments are noteworthy considering that the chairmanship seat of the PLP will
be challenged by former PLP Senator Robyn Lynes and former cabinet minister and MP
Shane Gibson during the upcoming PLP Convention scheduled for next week.
The previous day, when she announced her candidacy for chairmanship of the party, Ms.
Lynes suggested that the party needs a chairman who will be able to focus solely on party
“The thing about it is that our blueprint is not a government document, it’s a party document,
and members of our organization led by a steering committee came together and we thought
about those things and now, in order for us to effectively execute those things, the party still
has to function. The party has to be even stronger than it was when we were in opposition, so
all of our committees, all of our institutions, all of our branches, our stalwart council, our
national general council, everything needs to be in tip-top form,” Ms. Lynes said.
“Governance is hard. Governance is difficult. I sometimes look at the stretch of our prime
minister and the agenda and I say to myself: ‘Not even on my best day would I wish this on
me.’ But that is because that is his job and while he is working that job, whilst our members
of parliament are there working their job, Cabinet ministers working their job, then I want to
be in the chair working this job.”
As it relates to the other PLP chairman hopeful, Mr. Gibson announced his nomination for
the chairmanship seat after being denied the nomination to run for the PLP in the by-election
for West Grand Bahama and Bimini at the PLP’s recent National General Council (NGC)
It is thought that Mr. Gibson’s running for the PLP chairman seat is a get back at Minister

Mitchell, with the two subtly going back and forth in recent weeks with the dispute’s origins
going back to when Mr. Gibson expressed an interest in the MICAL constituency seat,
currently occupied by Basil McIntosh.
The party’s convention is set to take place November 9 and 10 at Baha Mar.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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