Categorized | National News

Davis Wants PM’s Apology

While claiming that the Free National Movement (FNM) “cannot be trusted,” Opposition Leader Philip Davis is calling on Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis to apologize to Bahamians for “lies” concerning the Baha Mar deal.

“In desperation, the FNM spent almost a year, saying day after day, week after week, that there was something illegal or unethical in the Baha Mar documents sealed in the Supreme Court.  And now they casually admit it was all a lie,” Davis said yesterday in his response to the unsealing of the Baha Mar deal.

Last week, the prime minister announced in the House of Assembly that the Baha Mar deal has been unsealed.

But according to Davis, Dr. Minnis had no courage to own up to the facts of the deal, which was left to Attorney General Carl Bethel, who discussed the deal last week during his contribution to the debate on the 2017/2018 Budget Communication in the Senate.

“The attorney general revealed that there is nothing out of the ordinary about the Baha Mar agreement. He recommended that the government honour the lawful contracts of the previous administration. He said there was nothing unconscionable about the deal,” Davis said.

He also noted that the attorney general said there was no basis to go back on the arrangements and conceded that the Heads of Agreement, already released by the Christie administration, was the only part of the deal that should be in the public domain, as the remainder of the terms were commercially sensitive, and should remain sealed for the time being.

As a result, Davis said, “This is not only a breathtaking climb down by the FNM government, but an admission of the lies and the campaign of deceit which they have waged against the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) and the Bahamian people. They say it’s the people’s time, but how can we trust these people? For almost two years, the FNM told the Bahamian people that the Baha Mar deal was not real.”

The Baha Mar deal was accepted by the Supreme Court last August under the PLP government and according to Davis, for almost two years the FNM told the public that Bahamian employees, contractors and franchisees, who were owed millions of dollars by the resort’s developer Sarkis Izmirlian, would not be paid.

However, by last November, Bahamians were paid what they were owed.

“For almost two years the FNM told the Bahamian people that the development would never open, and then Baha Mar opened in April,” Davis added.

Davis wonders how Bahamians can trust the FNM when the budget debate showed that the party has no vision, the divisions that tore the party apart are already resurfacing and the promises made cannot be kept.

However, he said the PLP has heard Bahamians’ desire for change and are listening and introducing the reforms necessary to bring about that change.

“We have offered to be constructive partners with the government, and yet they have chosen to squander their political honeymoon on a fruitless witch hunt, which has led them down the path of telling even more lies within the privileged walls of parliament. The saga of Baha Mar tells it all,” Davis explained.

“They have appointed a Minister of Tourism who, by his very job, has a fundamental conflict of interest in Baha Mar. The success of Baha Mar speaks directly to his failure!”

Davis noted that the opposition cannot trust a government which “cynically lies to the Bahamian people, and when confronted with the evidence of the truth, merely shrugs and carries on. The prime minister must apologize to the country.”

“He must rid himself of those ministers who already have extensive conflicts of interest,” Davis said.  “Rather than waste time victimizing ordinary Bahamians who have worked honestly in the people’s interest, he should focus on delivering the change which he so rashly promised.”

Written by Jones Bahamas

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