Operation Blood Sport: A Danger to Our Democracy

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On Monday, February 11th Dr. Duane Sands, Minister of Health, while being interviewed by reporter Clint Watson, on the program Beyond the Headlines, said that “politics was a bloodsport”. The expression when taken into context meant destroying your political adversaries, cause irreparable damage to the character, and humiliation. A Minister while speaking in his official capacity speak for and on behalf of the government. I believe that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. I, further, believe that he was sending the PLP a warning signal.

On Tuesday, the 12th of February, in the early morning hours” Operation Bloodsport” was underway when a police plane landed in Freeport from New Providence. The the goal that morning, was to arrest Michelle Reckley, a former deputy director of Urban Renewal, in the last PLP Christie’s administration. It was clear that she was to be taken from her home in a most unseemly, and boorish manner; not even
afforded any feminine, hygienic courtesies you would afford any mature, non-violent offender. That was (wrong ).
Once in police custody in Freeport, all media houses in New Providence were notified of her arrest and that formal charges would be brought later that afternoon. Also, while in Freeport she was denied access to her attorney (wrong). It would appear that there was not enough video cameras in Grand Bahama for the arraignment from a PR standpoint; so, it was more convenient for the arraignment to take place in the capital city of Nassau( wrong).

At the appropriate time, just before the close of the business day, with all the media houses present the slow choreographed walk of shame, and humiliation, took place( wrong). In the courtroom late in the closing minutes off the afternoon, it was discovered that the paperwork was not in order and, therefore, the arraignment would have to be postponed until 12 noon, the following day. Then, the second walk of shame would take place (wrong).

This was the circus the FNM government needed to take the attention off Dr.Sands and Marvin Dames who was rebuked by a magistrate for misbehavior in the Frank Smith trial. These two ministers were also rebuked by noted Pastor and Academic, Rev. Dr. Keith Russell who publicly excoriated them for their part in Frank Smith’s trial.

The Constitution of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas provides that an accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Let me also declare that no one is above the law. And if Mrs. Reckley has offended the law she is entitled to be heard and given an opportunity to mount a defense before a competent court of law where Blind Justice can be dispensed.
Bahamians in the main and PLP’s in particular will not stand by and allow this crude behavior to take root in our country. If allowed to continue, this behavior will lead to trouble in the streets of our beloved country, God forbid.

On Wednesday past, the country saw on display in Parliament an unbridled, hot headed, rookie Minister of National Security, Marvin Dames, out of control allowing his emotions to go unchecked. He has demonstrated that he lacks the temperament and acumen to continue on in that high office as minister. The Royal Bahamas police force should never be used as a political tool to settle scores. The Prime Minister must act and remove the hot head before further damage is inflicted on our democracy, and disorder breaks out in the streets of our country . Countries fall into chaos because of ill-advised judgments off political leaders, let it not be so with us.
“Let all things be done in decency and in order” Apostle Paul.

Brian Seymour