BRIAN SEYMOUR WRITES FROM FREEPORT ON THE BUDGET
Pt.# 1 Big Dumb and Happy Budget
Four years ago the people of the Bahamas elected Dr. Hubert Minnis’FNM and thirty four of his chosen best and brightest men and women to run this country. A big mistake!! Four years later, The Commonwealth of The Bahamas stands on the precipice of economic decay because of ineptitude and mismanagement of public administration by the people he hand-picked. If immediate steps are not taken to alter the present economic course and direction of this FNM government, our grandchildren will pay dearly for bad decisions made.
The budget presented by the Prime Minister could only be described as a Big, Dumb, and Happy; a budget that does not take into account the economic danger that lies ahead.
Prime Minister, Dr. Minnis during his budget presentation demonstrated in clear terms that he, often times, does not count the cost and effect of the words that he speak. For example, when he volunteered and told the nation that most of his cabinet was vaccinated. This demonstrated that he was unable to convince his cabinet colleagues that vaccination was the quickest and most effective way for the country to recover from this pandemic, and fully reopen the country for business. The question is, if the Prime Mainister is unable to convince ALL of his cabinet colleagues to take the vaccine; how, then, does he expect to convince an already suspicious and hesitant public that the vaccine is indeed safe? The Prime Minister did not do this country any favors with his clumsy remarks. Instead of calming concerns, he has done untold damage to the cause of vaccination and achieving herd immunity. “Physician Heal Thyself”.
Dr. Minnis also announced that financing has been secured for Princess Margaret Hospital, and the Rand Memorial Hospital in Grand Bahama . This was nothing more than a campaign promise. It cannot happen, and it will not happen. From the time a cabinet conclusion is reached, the technical work between the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Works, and the tendering processes involved provided there are no glitches along the way; it will take 18 months before a shovel goes into the ground. PM your government is out of time. We have the Financial and Audit Act that governs the process.
Prime Minister instead of dreaming and misleading an uninformed populace, a realistic goal for your FNM government is paying the nurses their back pay that has been outstanding from 2019; paying the contractors for work completed on the Rand Hospital; and procuring the equipment needed for the Rand Hospital to function properly; moving the Ward from Christ The King Parish Hall into the hospital, thereby, allowing the hospital to be fully functional, and properly managed. Prime Minister, your announcement was nothing more than smoke and mirrors; a cruel joke played on the people of the Bahamas.
In Part #2: I will deal specifically with the Ministers from Grand Bahama.