Lynn Holowesko, former President of the Senate and Co-Chair of the Yes Vote Campaign, wrote this thoughtful letter to the editor in response to the ill-considered remarks for former President of the Court of Appeal Dame Joan Sawyer on the four referendum bills which she considered a waste of time, even though Dame Joan claimed she had not read the bills:
The glaring headline in your paper [The Nassau Guardian] of Monday 25 April 2016 is reflective of the shock I felt on reading the article below the headline. It is not merely disappointing to read that a person of Dame Joan Sawyer’s standing in our community would admit that she “ has not yet seen the questions” but that the referendum was “ a waste of time” and if she does vote, she would vote no.
It is surprising that a woman of her intellect, whose profession is to make decisions based on facts and the law, would so willingly undermine her credentials by doing neither.
Countless Bahamian men and women have had their lives negatively impacted by the discrimination presently embodied in the constitution. I am one of them. I know and I have met many, many others.
The referendum seeks to remove that discrimination and give equal rights to Bahamian males and females . Nothing more—nothing less.
Dame Joan might be reminded that Bahamian men and women look up to individuals like her who have achieved so much and has been so highly honoured. For her to make such a callous and uninformed comment about an event so significant in our country’s development is extremely surprising and very difficult to understand.