The Rebel Four Given An Ultimatum

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( Editor’s note: Vaughn Milller, Reece Chipman, Frederick Mcalpine and Travis Robinson all FNM backbenchers voted with the PLP to oppose the lease of the Town Centre Mall by the Government to Brent Symonette, Minister for Immigration.  The vote took place on 24 October. They have been reportedly told get back in line or be expelled. After reading what Vaughn Miller had to say, we can see why. In his own words as reported by The Tribune.)

There is no shame in this shameful act,” Mr Miller said. “We in the FNM seem to be saying corruption is wrong in public office only when the PLP is doing it. Corruption is corruption regardless of who is doing it. This resolution is offensive because it reeks of a corrupt foolish act that supports the wicked transfer of money out of the people’s treasury into a pocket of a Cabinet minister boldly and brazenly.”

He added: “We cannot sit here and say we are opposed to corruption and yet we are planning to support this resolution which is a continuation, a perpetuation of an age-old, well-greased corrupt practice. If we in the FNM are against corruption, then we must be against it in every shape, in every form, in every apparition, in every manifestation, everywhere and every time. This resolution is peculiar in that a Cabinet minister, not a backbencher is involved. Following the execution of the lease (he) will be called upon to make joint decisions as to appropriate funds to be paid for the complex as well as public funds for the refurbishment of the old office.

“Clearly the minister will be in a constant state of conflict of interest. Once this resolution would’ve passed and the lease is executed, the minister would no longer be just a minister in Cabinet but a silent and powerful negotiator for his company every time matters related to the post office building comes up,” Mr Miller said.

He also said: “By tradition, he will be expected to excuse himself from these specific decision-making processes and sessions. Then he will be rendered useless as a minister as far as all matters relating to the post office is concerned and the treasury will be paying him a portion of a salary for nothing. In other words, we cannot have ministers so conflicted that they cannot attend a Cabinet meeting because matters they are involved in are being discussed. A Cabinet minister whose tenant is the government will be privy to information that other landlords would not have. We would be fooling ourselves to believe that one man could serve two masters. This resolution is unbelievably offensive because it seeks to perpetuate a vile corrupt practice. It is too brazen.”