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24TH MARCH 2017

Party, Leader and Prime Minister;
Deputy Leader and Deputy Prime Minister;
Stalwart Councilors, Party Officers, members and supporters, a pleasant good evening.

It’s always a great joy to be here in Eleuthera the land of Freedom. My Dear Mother’s Father was born on Harbour Island and my dear wife was born in James Cistern. I have a special and deep love for the people of Eleuthera. Election fever is in the air and we come to join you in an all Eleuthera Constituency meeting here in much loved Hatched Bay.

On the heels of a blatant and bold faced lie told by FNM Chair Sidney Collie, former Prime Minister Ingraham, the mean-spirited, spiteful and petty Abaco Dragon, has now emerged to create further confusion to an FNM campaign driven largely by intellectual dishonesty and hypocrisy.

There is no mistake that these comments are part of the FNM’s slop bucket campaign.

Hubert Ingraham has no credibility on public finances. Let us put his record to the test.

The indisputable facts are that he managed to turn a budget surplus into a $500 million deficit in just five years even though the FNM government collected around $500 million in one-off revenue from dividends and the sale of several strategic assets, both private and public (BTC, BORCO, SOUTH RIDING POINT, BAHA MAR).

He practically gave away BTC, leaving over $60 million in the bank for the purchasers.

He ignored the policy warnings of the highly respected and independent Central Bank and cancelled over $80 million worth of public works.

After firing well qualified Bahamian road builders, the Abaco Dragon went on to hire Jose Cartellones Construction Company of Argentina – and you all know the story – the cost overrun on the project was in excess of $100 million, scores of businesses were forced to close and hundreds of Bahamians lost their jobs due to FNM mismanagement.

The deposed former Opposition Leader Hubert Minnis summed it up after declaring the Ingraham era is over that his FNM government left this country in a wheelchair so Ingraham has absolutely no credibility on government finances. He did a terrible job as Minister of Finance, creating one big mess that the PLP continues to clean up to this very day.

Rickey Mackey

Now to the main reason for my visit. Dr. Minnis’ candidate, the FNM Candidate for North Eleuthera Howard ‘Rickey’ Mackey to date owes the Bahamas government thousands of dollars in customs duties which he committed in writing to pay, but has failed to do so. Please see attached letter under Mackey’s signature dated 2013. CLICK HERE…

My sources tell me Business licenses fees, vehicle licenses and VAT are long overdue. Old rusting equipment owned by Rickey is a blight on the environment of Harbour Island. The PLP strongly questions Mr. Mackey’s suitability to hold public office, no less the post of Honourable Member of Parliament, if he refuses to or is unable to pay his taxes and to protect the environment on Briland.

I remind you that the FNM, including the Abaco Dragon, is trying to make public finances a major issue in this election but fielding a bill ducking tax cheating candidate with the weaknesses and deficiencies of Mr. Mackey again calls into question the judgment of Dr. Minnis and the FNM’s candidates vetting process. Further, this revelation also projects a negative light on the FNM as an organization mired in hypocrisy.

Clay Sweeting and Butch Scavella

In stark contrast to Mr. Mackey, Clay Sweeting, a native of Spanish Wells, behaves responsibly and pays his taxes, setting a good example for the people of North Eleuthera and indeed The Bahamas to follow. He is an entrepreneur who continues to contribute to the growth and development of the local economy of North Eleuthera. He is a loving husband and doting father who is as committed to North Eleuthera as he is to his young family.

Clay can attest to the effectiveness and success of Project Sandy Bottom in protecting our fishing and marine resources for Bahamians. This is coupled with the expansion of our marine reserves by a whopping eleven million acres which no doubt includes fertile marine spawning grounds. We all know that protecting our marine resources increases our nation’s bountiful harvest, fruits of the sea, which means many more jobs and greater entrepreneurial opportunities for Bahamians.

The Four Seasons and Cotton Bay developments in addition to a new school, a new mini hospital and an upgraded international airport will together modernize Eleuthera and strengthen its economy. This is progress ladies and gentlemen.

I am advised that the current fishing season is the best in many, many years. I have confidence in Clay Sweeting and I endorse him as your next Member of Parliament. The PLP has confidence in Clay and I ask you to support the candidacy and campaign of Clay Sweeting – send him to Parliament to be your voice to move North Eleuthera forward together.

Stephen Hank Thompson

I turn my attention to South Eleuthera. The FNM Candidate who left the PLP because he failed to get a nomination. Just yesterday I was informed that he made a big scene at BTC as he allowed his bill to remain unpaid for months.

Our PLP brother to the south is a good son of the soil who elevated himself from the quaint settlement of Hatchet Bay to become the third Commodore of the Royal Bahamas Defense Force through discipline, a definitive vision for the defense force and plain old fashioned hard work. His military training has taken him to Great Britain, the Caribbean and Latin America and has afforded him a world view that will serve him well as your next MP and member of a PLP government.

His training has taught him to be goal oriented and time sensitive because life and death often times depend on swift and accurate decisions. Clifford ‘Butch’ Scavella is loved by South Eleuthera and he loves his hometown dearly. So South Eleuthera, give of your time and talents to the campaign to elect Clifford ‘Butch’ Scavella.

So North Eleuthera, are you sending Clay to Parliament??!!

South Eleuthera, are you sending Butch to Parliament??!!


Have a safe and peaceful campaign season, God bless and good night.