Categorized | Featured, National News

Key Refuses To Follow FNM Colleagues

Edison Key

Edison Key was the only Free National Movement (FNM) Member of Parliament to not join in the Opposition’s demonstration in the House of Assembly during the debate on the Stem Cell Research and Therapy Bill and he said that is because this battle is one he does not support.

“I’m not a follower,” I’ve never been a follower. If I believe in something I believe in it.”

It is on that premise that Mr. Key said he did not engage in the Opposition’s protest in Parliament on Wednesday.

The Central and South Abaco MP was the third to contribute to the debate when it first began and from the very onset supported the cause.

He told reporters Wednesday that his position on the issue remains and noted that now that his leader and Opposition colleagues do not support it does not shake his belief at all.

In fact the 75-year-old MP said had it not been for stem cell therapy he probably would not be alive today.

“September would make three years since I had quadruple bypass surgery,” Mr. Key said.

“Just suppose the government made a law that no doctor in The Bahamas could take another artery from another part of your body and put it in to divert a blocked artery to save my life.

“I would have been dead three years ago.”

Mr. Key said he had that surgery in Miami adding that it is because of that surgery that he said when the Opposition stood up as opponents to the debate he just could not join in.

During Wednesday’s ruckus Key sat silently in his corner seat and did not interfere with police as they tried to take FNM Leader Dr. Hubert Minnis away.

Dr. Minnis had been ordered by House Speaker Dr. Kendal Major to withdraw comments he made weeks earlier about Prime Minister Perry Christie, which suggested that he was “corrupt”.

But even yesterday, Dr. Minnis refused to take those comments back and was asked to leave the House of Assembly.

After the FNM was forced out of the House by several police officers, Mr. Key was only one to be seated in the Opposition’s front row.

He said he does not agree with his leader’s actions but that he cannot criticise him for them.

“That’s entirely up to him and that’s his actions,” he added. “I don’t intend to condemn him because that’s his views just like this is my view.

“I have no right to get up in Parliament to call another member a crook or a thief unless I have evidence to prove it. This is exactly what took place and my leader was asked to withdraw to produce the evidence and he couldn’t produce the evidence and he didn’t withdraw so I didn’t see any need to follow behind him.”

But Mr. Key said Wednesday’s incident was not the first time he publicly has disagreed with his party on an issue and said during the budget debate he voted differently than the other seven FNM MPs.

“What would I look like supporting it and then turning against it because someone else turned against it,” he asked. “I will always vote on what my conscience tells me and what I believe is the right thing to do.”

The records show that Mr. Key has crossed party lines before but he said this incident does not suggest a rift between himself and the FNM nor any allegiance to the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP).

The MP added that the only allegiance he is strengthening is to Edison Key and noted that when the House meets again he plans to be right there because he is a Member of Parliament and he has not been suspended, his leader has.

The Stem Cell Research and Therapy Bill passed in the House of Assembly Wednesday night.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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