Unimpressed with the government’s recent board and committee appointments, Free National Movement (FNM) Chairman Charles Maynard not only labeled the appointments “late and disappointing,” but went a step further and said the appointees were “not the right fit.”
Those comments angered Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman Bradley Roberts, who quickly fired back.
“First Mr. Maynard claimed that Mr. Christie was late in appointing these boards and committees. But it turns out that it took the prime minister just 62 days to complete his appointments, it took the FNM government 67 to complete the same task. The PLP was quicker and more decisive in concluding their responsibility of governance, so he lost that argument.” Mr. Roberts said.
Mr. Maynard highlighted a number of concerns about the appointments.
He also told the Bahama Journal that he felt saddened for young, talented and deserving Bahamians who were overlooked.
The majority of the appointees are over the age of 30.
“What happened to the new generation of leaders that the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) touted during its election campaign,” Mr. Maynard said.
“It is a list of the old guard of the PLP and recycled politicians and political cronies. We were expecting to see young, bright Bahamians given the opportunity to serve the country at that level. There is really no excuse for them not to have included more of the young, vibrant people who really support the PLP.”
Mr. Roberts did not deny that the government’s list included a significant amount of older Bahamians, but he was quick to point out that the FNM, too, overlooked young Bahamians and recycled old faces.
“Mr. Maynard has clearly forgotten that Sir William Allen, who is going on 76 years of age, served as an advisor for the Ministry of Finance; [Bahamas Agricultural and Industrial Corporation (BAIC) Chairman] was 73-years-old when he served; Frank Watson, aged 72, who served as Chairman of the Airport Authority, and the list goes on,” Mr. Roberts said.
Mr. Maynard even took a jab at Mr. Roberts’ age while noting that he was not the right fit for the Water & Sewerage Corporation (WSC).
“I think that the Water and Sewerage Corporation is in a transition stage and needs somebody who is a little more relevant to the time to assist in that process. Additionally, there were also allegations during the government’s past time in office of some suspicious deals which related to the corporation and Mr. Roberts’ name was all tied up in that. So, it does not give us a sense of comfort to see him at the helm of the corporation,” Mr. Maynard said.
Mr. Roberts shot down Mr. Maynard’s allegations and called for him to retract his statements.
“I Bradley Roberts categorically deny being involved in any suspicious deals during my tenure as Minister of Works and Utilities. Charles Maynard and the former FNM administration had five years to review and examine any and all events of my former ministry and to present facts to substantiate any bogus allegation and they failed to do so,” he said.
“I demand that Charles Maynard unconditionally retract his bogus allegations or face a defamation suit.”
Mr. Roberts says Mr. Maynard’s “constant incoherent rambling” will cost the FNM to lose its already dying appeal to Bahamians.