Roberts: Duplicity, hypocrisy and dishonesty know no bounds in the FNM


PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts
PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts

Bradley B. Roberts
National Chairman
Progressive Liberal Party

In responding to the call for the resignation of the Attorney General on the grounds of conflict of interest, some important questions must be put to the Leader of the Opposition, Dr. Minnis.

Did the Public Hospital Authority (PHA) enter into a contractual (lease) agreement involving the use of Stat Care building on the corner of Nassau and Meeting Streets while he served as the Minister of Health between 2007 and 2012? Dr. Minnis must confirm or deny this and state whether he benefited financially from the arrangement.

As the Minister responsible for the PHA and a businessman with significant financial interest in Stat Care, it would appear that he was in a conflict between his public duty and his private business interests. Also, it would appear as if Dr. Minnis abused and corrupted his office as the substantive Health Minister by accruing unto himself an unreasonable benefit, a violation of his oath of office.

It is necessary for him to clarify this seemingly conflicted arrangement if he is to be seen as a credible opposition leader with clean hands. Dr. Minnis knows full well that sweeping this under the carpet does not a clean hand make as his hands still appears grubby. Minnis must put up or shut up.

And where was Minnis and his integrity and why was he not beating the drum of integrity in public office and calling for resignations when a former member of that same FNM Cabinet, namely Brent Symonette, also enriched himself through his conflicted involvement with the port relocation; the port development; and the New Providence road works to the tune of millions of tax payers’ dollars. Minnis must explain and clarify the conflict or shut the hell up.

But perhaps Mr. Minnis and Mr. Symonette are both prepared to disclose to the public if they are among the list of nineteen families awarded millions by the FNM Cabinet they served when the Arawak Port Development was created. And if they are, will Dr. Minnis now resign knowing that he sat around the cabinet table and enriched himself at the expense of the public purse and public interest.

Minnis can set the record straight or set the example of integrity by resigning, but duplicity, dishonesty, hypocrisy and double talk are insufferable.

It is never too late to do the right thing.

I suspect Minnis will opt not to speak on these issues for fear of incriminating himself. I suspect he is hoping against hope that those issues will all just go away.

As for Loretta Butler Turner and her duplicity and hypocrisy, the FNM still owes Sandy Schafer, a foreign investor in Robin Hood, a public apology. The FNM government destroyed his business and displaced scores of Bahamian workers. As for reeling in Ministers, Loretta must explain exactly when did former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham reeled in Zhivargo Laing on the Mona Vie debacle; dealt with Neko Grant on the botched road works; reeled in Earl Deveaux on the pleasure helicopter ride and called for Brent Symonette’s resignation after numerous blatant acts of malfeasance.

She should have apologized and resigned after she assaulted Andre Rollins; the last time I checked assault and battery was a felony in this country. It matters nil that every media personality used their platform to sanitize her by excusing her inexcusable and violent behavior. It was disgraceful for a leader to treat the precincts of Parliament as a common bar room.