04/14/24 12:11 PM

On Sunday past 7 April 2024, the Grand Bahama Port Authority issued a nasty press release. This is now a pattern of foreign investors in The Bahamas who now so forget themselves that they seek to publicly challenge the Government of The Bahamas. This surely means push has come to shove. The press release said that they did not owe the Government of The Bahamas a penny and intended not to pay and would fight any attempt to get them to pay.

The statement was impertinent and full of cheek.  It is our view that they should be slapped down, slapped down quickly and without equivocation.  For years, successive Bahamian governments have been playing footsy with a crew that obviously has nothing in their heads and certainly has no money.  We are talking about the present generation of owners of the Grand Bahama Port Authority that have failed miserably in fulfilling their obligations to the Bahamian public pursuant to the provisions of the Hawksbill Creek Agreement 1955.

The most recent outrageous example of default is that of the inability or unwillingness to repair the airport in Freeport after the damage by Hurricane Dorian in 2019.  They did nothing, then collected the insurance money and sold the airport to the government for 1 dollar.  The foolish FNM Prime Minister and his colleagues picked it up for a dollar in fee simple but also liabilities of 250 million at least to get it repaired.

Now these same people who walked away from their obligations, want to fight the Government of The Bahamas under Philip Davis because a lawful demand has been made to repay the government for the services that the government provides to their city.  A city which they say they own and which according to the agreement requires the reimbursement of the costs of Government services supplied to the city.

In the book of Job, it says the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.  The Grand Bahama Port Authority and their shareholders ought to know that admonition.  The powers under the Hawksbill Creek Agreement are legislated powers, and devolved powers.  We think it is time that the Bahamas Government declare that there has been a fundamental breach of the contract and take steps in the legislation to remove the regulatory powers of the Grand Bahama Port Authority.

Number of hits for the week ending Saturday 13 April 2024 up to midnight: 412,752;

Number of hits for the month of April up to Saturday 13 April 2024 up to midnight: 967,493;

Number of hits for the year up to Saturday 13 April 2024 up to midnight: 6,361,996;