There are some things that you should just leave alone. After years of practice as a public figure, you should get a sense of what that is. Halson Moultrie, the Speaker of the House of Assembly, has clearly not gotten that message. Last week on Tuesday 29th October 2019, he had a meltdown in the House of Assembly which led to him being universally denounced by people from across the political spectrum. All of this stemmed from a simple act of a Nassau Guardian photographer taking a photo of the MP for Exuma Chester Cooper in the House of Assembly.
This is something which is done as a matter of routine every day in the House. In the age of the ubiquitous camera phone, not only people in the gallery, but the press and the members themselves are busy taking pictures with their phones. Jasper Ward took those pictures and she was asked or ordered to surrender her phone and delete the photos that she took.
The Speaker has no authority to do any such thing. The problem with our country is that we get so intimidated by official power that we surrender step by step the free speech and association which we have. The reporter should have refused to surrender the phone and told the Speaker where to go. The problem is because The Guardian is FNM she had to wonder whether or not her employers would back her in her refusal.
The Guardian at least on this occasion was not amused and called Mr. Moultrie every name in The Book.
The Tribune carried a story after talking to former Deputy Prime Minister for the FNM Frank Watson who said that if it had been Hubert Ingraham as Prime Minister, he would have fired his ( Mr. Moultrie’s) ass. The Guardian said that Mr. Moultrie’s statement was over the top.
Senator Fred Mitchell, the Chairman of the PLP, said in a voice note that Mr. Moultrie was pleading the law as his defence. Mr. Mitchell quoted from the novel Oliver Twist and said : “ If the law supposes that, then the law is an ass.” Mr. Mitchell said that Mr. Moultrie should examine the quote because if he didn’t people might think he is an ass.
We have no love or brief for Halson Moultrie. We think he is a natural disgrace, an idiot and a damn fool, full of himself and a nasty individual with poor character and little people skills. Such is the measurement of the failure of the PLP in the last election that we have ended up with the dregs of society sitting in the seats of power. The democracy of which we are so proud have saddled us with Minnis, Moultrie, Sands and Dames to name a few. These are people not fit for office and are a total embarrassment to the name Bahamian and leadership.
We totally denounce them all. That is not over the top. That is simply the truth.