Categorized | National News

Cornish Resigns as Parliamentary Secretary

By Licec Bastian

Journal Staff Writer

The resignation of North Abaco Member of Parliament Kirk Cornish as Parliamentary Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister in Abaco was accepted by Prime Minister Philip Davis on Tuesday.

Cornish’s resignation was per a request by the prime minister after police issued a notice that a 48-year-old male of Abaco would be arraigned in the Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday on allegations of sexual assault and threats of death to a 35-year-old Abaco woman.

“I have requested and accepted the resignation of Mr. Kirk Cornish as parliamentary secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister,” the prime minister’s statement said.

“His service to the government and people of The Bahamas is acknowledged with gratitude.

“An independent director of public prosecutions has determined that there is sufficient evidence to bring charges. It is now up to our judicial system to resolve the outcome, so I will not be providing additional comment except to say that my prayers are extended to all who are suffering because of this matter.”

To the constituents on North Abaco, Prime Minister Davis said, “I want to assure the people of North Abaco that efforts to build opportunities and relief in your communities are on the way and will face no interruptions.”

Cornish, in a statement in his defense, said the charges against him are “totally false.”

“The charges are based on allegations which are totally false. I am fully confident that the facts which emerge during the judicial process will prove my innocence,” Cornish said.

“I look forward to ending this nightmare.

“The facts will show that this was a break-up that was manipulated and exploited for political reasons and nothing more.

“The truth will set me free.”

The MP gave no indication that he would resign as the sitting member of North Abaco.

“To the people of North Abaco, I know this is a very unwelcomed distraction. You deserve effective representation, and it is my responsibility to prove to you that he can serve you well even as legal efforts to clear his name are underway,” he said.

It was on April 7, 2023 that allegations were made by the now former girlfriend of Cornish. She reported to police in Grand Bahama that she was sexually assaulted and threatened by a male known to her.

It was later reported by a local daily that the accused was a sitting MP. Initially, speculations swirled as to who the individual was until Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander confirmed it was the North Abaco MP.

In April, Cornish turned himself into police for questioning and was released on the same day.

Last month, Commissioner Fernander was pressed on when the MP would face charges, based on recommendations by the Director of Public Prosecutions Cordell Frazier and he told reporters to “just stand by.”

Following his arraignment in the Magistrate’s Court, Supreme Court Justice Gregory Hilton granted Cornish $9,000 bail with two sureties. He is required to sign in once a week in Abaco under the terms of his bail conditions.

There is no legal requirement for the Progressive Liberal Party MP to resign his seat in Parliament, except he is found guilty of the allegations leveled against him.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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