Categorized | National News

Stuart Drops Out of Deputy Race- Neymour vying for deputy chairman

With less than 48 hours to go before Free National Movement (FNM) delegates gather to elect new leadership to take the embattled party forward, one candidate eyeing a top leadership post stunned many by announcing yesterday that he was pulling out of the race.

Former Bahamas Democratic Movement (BDM) Leader Cassius Stuart announced on his Facebook page that he has decided to withdraw from the deputy leadership contest.

In his post, Mr. Stuart wrote, “Our party, in my opinion, would do well to have an injection of new and vibrant talent as well as thinkers that would truly ignite our party.”

“For this reason I was compelled and fuelled to move forward and contest the deputy leadership position of our party. Even though I strongly believe I can be very effective in bringing about this transformation I must forgo this decision.”

It is still unclear as to what sparked this sudden decision by Mr. Stuart, however, in recent days, he has come under some criticism over remarks he made during a series of interviews with various media organisations.

Last week, a farcical headline in one of the newspapers claimed Mr. Stuart felt women would vote for him because he was “sexy.”

He later went on to explain that the newspaper had taken his remarks out of context.

Mr. Stuart has been an outspoken advocate and political observer for more than a decade.

In 1998 he became one of the founders of the now dismantled BDM.

He has publicly criticised both the FNM and Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) governments over the years and he was famously arrested after handcuffing himself to the Speaker’s mace during debate in the House of Assembly in 2001.

At the time Mr. Stuart maintained that the Ingraham administration was practicing gerrymandering in the way it had carried out boundary cuts ahead of the 2002 General Election.

In 2005, Mr. Stuart again garnered headlines when he tried to block then Prime Minister Perry Christie from entering the House of Assembly in protest against the government’s decision to move a resolution in parliament allowing a government MP more time to appeal a bankruptcy order against him.

Mr. Stuart left the BDM in 2010 and he joined the FNM last year.

He ran unsuccessfully on the FNM’s ticket for the Bamboo Town constituency in the recent general election.

The race for the deputy leadership will be a two-way contest between Long Island Member of Parliament Loretta Butler-Turner and Opposition Senate Leader Desmond Bannister.

Opposition Leader Dr. Hubert Minnis is expected to be unchallenged in his bid for the leadership position.

Meanwhile, former State Minister for the Environment Phenton Neymour announced yesterday that he plans to run for deputy chairman of the party.

Mr. Neymour, who served in the House of Assembly from 2007 to 2012, was recently defeated in the General Election where he ran for the Exuma and Ragged Island constituency.

Other candidates vying for the deputy chairman position include incumbent Michael Turnquest, Dr. Duane Sands, and Darron Cash.

The FNM’s convention will take place on Saturday at the Holy Trinity Activities Centre in Stapledon Gardens.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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