The Prime Minister Hubert Minnis is doubling down on the nonsense that he has been spinning on a monthly basis about this nation and corruption. He has been the subject of adverse commentary in this country since the day he was elected and decided to go down to Caricom in Grenada to tell the people of the Caribbean that his nation was corrupt. His government did not stop there. You know his government has been arresting and harassing his political opponents in the PLP since he got to office, actually bringing three former PLP politicians to court on charges and harassing at least another two former PLP MPs with police investigations. This is all part of the FNM playbook to win the next election by discrediting the PLP as a corrupt organization.
It has worked so well because there is a double standard which is employed when dealing with the PLP as compared to the FNM. The FNM gets a pass, the PLP has to jump through hoops on everything. So one has to ask how come Hubert Minnis himself who preaches about corruption in Government is able to sit as Prime Minister unscathed when he rented a building to the Government, to the Ministry of Health no less, when he was the Minister of Health. Not a word. He sees nothing wrong with it.
The adoring media of The Bahamas says nothing. Yet the same FNM Government and the adoring media are busy trying keep Jerome Fitzgerald, the former Minister of Education, out of politics because he wrote a note to the then developer of Bahamar on behalf of his father’s company. He received nothing in return. Obtained no benefit at all. Just the act of writing was enough to condemn and exclude him. Dr. Minnis who actually benefitted with ready money gets a pass.
See the PLP’s response to the story by Candia Dames of the Nassau Guardian on the subject below.
The story gets worse. Notwithstanding the public criticism, Dr. Minnis went down to Peru at the summit of the Americas and told the people there, the 33 other nations gathered there that The Bahamas was a corrupt nation; that we lose some 200 million dollars to corruption every year. He could not substantiate it. Gave some specious explanation about the OAS saying that we lose ten per cent of our GDP every year to that, meaning the hemisphere. Even that did not add up. He repeated the corruption claims when he went to the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting and when he came back doubled down by doubling the figure. He said that in fact we lose 500 million from corruption. Again no evidence to back it up.
The while thing really fell flat when the people from Transparency International who were holding a seminar in The Bahamas through a Fred Smith front Organization Good Governance, said that there is no way of actually quantifying the losses and that you are dealing with estimates. So the fact is, he has no evidence that this is what we lose from corruption.
What we know that is the perception in the society is that corruption is rife. What we actually lose is another matter. For example most people think that policemen are corrupt according to the survey by Public Domain published in the press on Friday 27 April. The Prime Minister seems to have shifted ground when he came back by saying that what he was talking about was people stealing papers, pens and pencils in the public service. So it’s the public servants that are corrupt not the politicians?
The whole thing is a ball of confusion. What we know is that the design of the Prime Minister is to continue with this story. It has worked for him politically and the PLP must fight tooth and nail to blunt the force of this argument. It is no surprise because the European ethos in our country has from time immemorial in this country said that everything related to Black people is corrupt, crooked and lazy. So the PLP as the party from the Black man in so any respects falls easily into that rubric.
It is not true. It is false but for the FNM their view is never let the truth interfere with a good story.
Number of hits for the week ending Saturday 28 April 2018 up to midnight: 160,811
Number of hits for the month of April up to Saturday 28th April 2018 up to midnight: 1,330,604
Number of hits for the year 2018 up to Saturday 28 April 2018 up to midnight: 6,304,789