Clement Pinder – A Commentary

By Fred Sturrup | Publisher/Editor  | Grand Bahama Courier

The name Clement Pinder is one of those that are unsung and often forgotten as important historical chapters are addressed from time to time.

I’ve been directly connected to media in The Bahamas for one year short of 60 years, beginning as a copy boy at the Nassau Guardian in June of 1965. 

In early stories which referred to the formation of the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP), I recall that Clement Pinder was always mentioned along with William Cartwright, Cyril Stevenson and Henry Taylor.

Recently, while doing a bit of research in preparation for the next publication of the periodical tabloid, Grand Bahama Courier, I noticed that Wikipedia mentioned only Cartwright, Stevenson and Taylor in a collective founding role.  I immediately contacted PLP Chairman Fred Mitchell who said he was not aware of a fourth founding member, but provided me with a contact for longtime PLP associate Minky Isaacs.

When I called Minky, I asked if he remembered the fourth founding member of the PLP. I mentioned that he once had an office on Market Street just south of Ross Corner on the upper floor of a two story building. Immediately, Minky voiced the name Pinder but neither of us could recall, at that moment, a first name. A short time later, though, Minky got back to me and said it was Clement.  I communicated the same to the chairman and he further forwarded the following:

“I knew Clement Pinder. H.M. Taylor who wrote the definitive narrative on the founding of the party does not acknowledge him (Clement Pinder) as one of the founders. He was certainly in the picture at the first convention, but not as a founder. Neither does Cyril Stevenson’s narrative (indicate as much).”

I found that comment interesting and can further attest to one of our late political historians, George Capron, informing me of how the four (Cartwright, Stevenson, Taylor and Pinder) used to meet at that same aforementioned office on Market Street, leading up the PLP being formed.

Certainly, it must be acknowledged that the matter should be cleared up entirely. Pinder was a quiet, unassuming person who appeared to prefer being in the background. But he was a competent businessman and a man of substance.

At the very least, it follows that Clement Pinder figured significantly in the early period of the PLP party. It is always pleasing to go down memory lane to bring attention to those who helped to make a positive difference.

Hopefully full clarity will be given, for the sake of history.

Island Relays Bahamas Set for GB March 15-19

By Fred Sturrup | GB News Editor | [email protected]

FREEPORT, Grand Bahama–The Island Relays Bahamas (March 15-19) extravaganza is expected to highlight the sports calendar in Grand Bahama. The relays which will attract track and field athletes from seven universities, is the first collegiate event of its kind hosted in the country.

With the University of The Bahamas (UB) as the country’s standard bearer, slated incoming teams are from such noted tertiary institutions as Prairie View University, University of Oklahoma, University of Arizona, Texas A&M University, University of South Carolina, and Vanderbilt University.

The relays are being organized by Joyce Johnson Enterprises, which is operating from a backdrop of high track and field popularity in Grand Bahama. The island’s track and field fans, long ago, cemented the brand as the most dynamic and productive host island in the nation, for the sport.

National track and field meets are often sparsely attended in the capital island of New Providence. However, hundreds of fans religiously make their way to the Grand Bahama Sports Complex when track and field is on the agenda.

Other than the high sporting presence, the Island Relays Bahamas will serve to give Grand Bahama’s flagging economy a much-needed bounce, as several hundreds, perhaps as many as 300 visitors, foreign and domestic anticipate converging on what was once the most magical social/sporting area in the region.

The hospitality industry will benefit abundantly according to marketing representative Ray Harris.

As for UB, the opportunity will be ideal to showcase its track and field dimension. “Previously UB has been mostly associated with team sports, the likes of basketball, softball and soccer,” said Harris.

Government officials, especially those from the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, inclusive of the Minister, Hon. Mario Bowleg; sporting fans; and the general public are encouraged to make the relays a priority on their schedules.


Bahamas Boxing Commission Praises Promoter

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

The Bahamas Boxing Commission (BBC) on Wednesday, announced that after working diligently with Bahamian entertainment promoter Whitney Ferguson for three years a blockbuster of an event is scheduled for Saturday, May 13, 2023, for the new Thomas Robinson Stadium at the Queen Elizabeth Sports Centre.

According to BBC Chairman Fred Sturrup, “This is the finest indication of a revival of the sport we love so dearly, in the last decade.”

“I wish to heap praises on Promoter Whitney Ferguson. He has demonstrated perseverance at the highest level. The calls made to me over the last three years and to BBC Secretary Calvin Greene have been quite a number. There were disappointing occasions when it seemed he would not be able to put a show together, but Ferguson pressed on.

“He networked through the commission with Hon. Mario Bowleg, Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture; US boxing affiliates; and this chairman (who is also a representative of the Commonwealth Boxing Council) to get to this point.

“Now a super boxing show, inclusive of participating Bahamian boxers (a matter being negotiated) is planned. The commission has endorsed the process and confirmed as much with Minister Bowleg. The show has been sanctioned by the Government of The Bahamas through its commission, and hopefully everything will work out,” said Chairman Sturrup.

The show, dubbed “The Return of Drama In Paradise”, will be headlined by a 10-round match featuring lightweights Xolosani Ndongeni and Ladarius Miller. Other bouts scheduled, are: welterweight-Layla McCarter (USA) vs Claudia Andrea Lopez (Argentina), 10 rounds; heavyweight-Justin Jones (USA) vs Saul Farah (Bolivia), 10 rounds; heavyweight-Richard Lamontage (USA) vs Esteban Hillman (Bolivia), 8/10 rounds; super featherweight-Alexander Casares (Mexico) vs Kevin Lionel Acevado (Argentina), 10 rounds; bantamweight-Abdulazeez Alamoodi (Dubai) vs Jose Garcia Sifuentes (Mexico), 8 rounds; super lightweight-Eduardo Javier Abreu (Argentina) vs Jose de Leon Jasso (Mexico), 6/8 rounds; flyweight- Marlen Avila (USA) vs Haiulie Villalobos Martinez (Mexico), 4 rounds; lightweight- Ashton Barreras (USA) vs Reymundo Gutierrez (Mexico), 4 rounds; heavyweight-Anonia Zepeda (USA) vs Skylar Lacy (USA), 6 rounds; super lightweight-Keith Hunter vs TBA (to be announced).

The commission in its press release, appealed to government agencies, in particular, the Ministry of Tourism, Immigration and Customs Departments, to accommodate Promoter Ferguson as he seeks to present a major event in our 50th Independence Anniversary year.

(A Bahamas Boxing Commission Press Release)

St George Remarks on Art Lucaya

Sarah St George – GBPA Chairman

Recently, Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) Chairman Sarah St. George officially announced the initial Freeport Art Festival, scheduled to start on March 23, 2023. The event is in keeping with the GBPA’s focus on inspiring the creative community. Some remarks presented by Chairman St. George follow:

“We’re here to announce our very first Freeport Art Festival over 3 days beginning March 23rd, Art Lucaya. We lost our main art gallery at Our Lucaya back in Hurricane Matthew. And now after Dorian and Covid, we can start to take pride and joy in celebrating our social and cultural as well as physical revival. We must continue to foster the immense reservoir of artistic talent that Grand Bahama possesses.

“Grand Bahamian artists shouldn’t only have the choice of Nassau as a venue to be seen, and tourists visiting the island shouldn’t have to go very far to see the art of Grand Bahama. When this happens, artists are able to earn a livelihood, and to be entrepreneurs. Art can be a hobby, but properly nurtured, it is a vocation, it creates an economy! Interestingly, the Art Basel Fair in Miami, which has been established for 20 years now, brings close to $500 million to Miami Beach in just a few days every year, and $2.5 billion in artworks. Imagine just a fraction of that here 60 miles away.

“Freeport can brand itself as a city of art and culture as well as industry, tech, and commerce. As this project has progressed, I and all of us have been stunned by the beauty, craftsmanship, and originality of the work created here, and the pieces that will be showcased the weekend of March 23. All nature starts with a small seed.  This is a small beginning, but Art Lucaya can grow into an annual festival attracting the attention of collectors and curators everywhere.

“Besides the art economy, what else does art bring to a culture, community and our children? It is a record, it is living history, it’s uplifting to the soul. It’s as important a means of self-expression as writing, music, singing; all of which are Godly in a sense, and make us more sensitive, creative, colourful, caring human beings.

“The Grand Bahama art community is alive and strong; Ben Ferguson, President of the GB Art Association, well-known Grand Bahamian artists like Sheldon Saint, Chantal Bethel, Leo Brown, Matthew Wildgoose, Denzil Lightbourne, Laurie Tuchel, Alisa Streather, Lisa Cordella, Del Foxton, Marina Gottlieb, Paula Farrington, Maquelle Munroe, Claudette Dean, and many others. A total of 45 artists will be exhibiting. Our vibrant community of artists needs a proper platform to share their work.

“As written in the Book of Matthew: ‘No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others’. The time has come!”

GBPA Chairperson Sarah St. George Paints Bright Future, Inspires Hopes

By Fred Sturrup | GB News Editor | [email protected]

It was a magical evening!

Sarah St. George, who sits in the chairman’s office at the Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA), inspired hopes in a festive audience. 

In attendance were His Excellency Sir Cornelius Smith, the nation’s Governor General; Minister of Social Services and Urban Development and Leader of Government Business in the House of Assembly, Obediah Wilchcombe; and GBPA president Ian Rolle, among the many dignitaries.

Indeed, the Grand Bahama Port Authority’s recent (December 9) Christmas bash at the famed Stoned Crab on Taino Beach, was certainly one of the social highlights of the closing year 2022. 

With her remarks, St. George fostered a joyous mood, but more importantly, divulged some very encouraging comments related to island-wide economic restoration and recovery that could bring about a revitalized island in 2023.

She spoke about some $500 million worth of investment projects “taking shape” in Grand Bahama. Inclusive are the Six Senses Hotel project under the Weller Pegasus brand, the much-talked about Carnival Port Project at Sharp Rock Point in East Grand Bahama, the West Atlantic Medical School, other new investments such as the Xquisite Yachts at Running Mon Marina, Ernst & Young Wealth Management, the new Solomon’s downtown mega food store, and Bahamas Minerals & Manufacturing.  

“We know we are blessed here in our small, but great nation. Having survived the devastation of Hurricane Dorian (in Grand Bahama), closely followed by the Covid-19 global pandemic and lockdown; I’m not sure any of us imagined the scale of readjustment to life and the economy.

“Let’s face it, the whole world is having its troubles,” she said.  St. George referred to the price increases “across the spectrum” and “problems with manufacturing goods, filling orders, deliveries and transportation.” She further mentioned the War in Ukraine which brought about global fuel cost increases and the heightened costs of basic food items.

“We can’t control it, so we must do everything in our power to counter the impact, to create more economic activity, more revenue for Grand Bahama. Even as I say this, many experts are predicting a recession in America sometime soon. But I’m thinking, is Grand Bahama in fact going the opposite way and beginning to thrive?

“This year, we have seen some $500 million, half a billion dollars, of inward investment taking shape on Grand Bahama. We spearheaded the new Carnival Port ground breaking. Carnival is spending some $350 million on the Port. Work has already started. They are spending at a rate of $5 million a month. Work on the actual 1000-foot trestle and steel pier should begin next February. The maritime work alone will amount to $120 million,” said St. George.

Other than the Six Senses Hotel project being led by Rupert Hayward, there is the option for a further 2000 acres of land development that Hayward and Henry St. George along with associates, are working on.

For sure, the stage definitely seems set for a revitalized island, well beyond mere talking points. St. George expressed appreciation to all of the organizations and agencies that are partners in the revitalization process.

“Our pledge this Christmas is to continue to strive for the success promised, for every man, woman and child living here in Grand Bahama. Christmas remains a symbol of rebirth and hope,” said the matriarch of the governing body of the City of Freeport, the GBPA, which greatly helps with the subsistence of residents in the fully government-controlled areas of West and East Grand Bahama. 

The GBPA event, indeed, sounded a rather nice note as 2023 approaches.

GBPA Continues Efforts to Boost Downtown Business Community

By Fred Sturrup |GB News Editor | [email protected]

The Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) is consistent with a strong focus on an organization it fostered years ago.  According to a recent release sent out from the GBPA, The Downtown Freeport Business Association, following recent elections, is headed by Antoine Brooks.

With the GBPA as the ongoing catalyst entity linked to the group of business owners, it is expected that as the Ministry of Grand Bahama, through the Government of The Bahamas, zeroes in major investments and capital projects in Grand Bahama, the GBPA will drive the initiative to revitalize the business sector of Freeport.

The GBPA and other participants who are striving for an economic bounce for the business places in downtown Freeport, are surely cognizant of how important their efforts are toward reviving the entire island financially. Freeport anchors the economy of Grand Bahama. 

It is for this reason, the GBPA has made the business association such a high priority. This is a challenging time for business houses, and many of those in the downtown sector have been struggling to keep doors open.

Downtown business owners are to be saluted for their determination. A greater connection to the buying public is imperative. Somehow the GBPA must help the business association to become more relevant, by guiding owners to concentrate on attractive marketing programs, in general, prices that will lure the local buyers.

There should be full recognition that the long-time habit of many, to simply board a ship, and go to Florida for shopping, is entrenched.  Be minded, downtown business owners.  Coming together to devise a formula to compete against the Florida market, is a necessity.

Best wishes.

“Round The Corner” Lounge presents Freeport’s Latest Social Environment

By Fred Sturrup |GB News Editor |[email protected]

Leave it to Janet Russell !

The veteran hospitality host/personality has embarked upon a venture, which, judging from the response on opening day, Sunday, October 30, will certainly bring a touch of magic back to Freeport.  Her lounge, located on Yellow Pine Road at the exact location where Radio Station Cool 96 FM once operated, is called “Round The Corner.” On Sunday past, a quality mixture of patrons turned up for the grand opening and there was host/manager/owner Janet beaming with joy, welcoming the first gathering from what is expected to be a long clientele list.

The venue focuses on rhythmic/pulsating music and sporting events.  Accordingly, some patrons were able to interact, and enjoy the music, while sipping their brand of beverage and savoring souse and finger food. Others watched their favorite NFL teams play. Later, NBA games were optional.

If the culture experienced at the opening remains, the Round The Corner lounge will become the new popular spot in Freeport, and be a superb attraction for a long time. 

Janet and her two assistants/bartenders Sandra Remy and Sherice McPhee are prime hosts, all with an exquisite hospitable touch and persona.

Well done, Janet and staff!


(GB News Editor Fred Sturrup’s note: The Bahamaman joint project is indeed unique.  It’s an exciting delivery from Jemima’s Playhouse. Of course the backdrop is a family from which creative juices flow. The Sawyers, in particular, Tyrone Sr. and older brother Rudy, set a high standard with their writing. Dr. Tyrone Sawyer II and Dr. Jemima Sawyer are establishing their very own brand. Best wishes)


“He’s flying in the air, it’s BahamaMan! Look over there, it’s BahamaMan! He can even lift planes! It’s BahamaMan! I stand for justice! It’s BahamaMan!” 

These are some of the lyrics to the chorus of the groundbreaking song, BahamaMan, which plays every day to the delight of students in pre-school through primary school across the United States, and to the absolute delight of their parents and caregivers.  The song is such a hit that the character, BahamaMan, has become a hero to so many!  And a staple character for Jemima’s Playhouse – a much beloved entertainment and educational company.

Jemima’s Playhouse is the brainchild of Dr. Tyrone Sawyer II and his wife, Dr. Jemima Sawyer.  From its humble beginnings ten years ago at their kitchen table in Atlanta, Georgia, Jemima’s Playhouse has come very far.  The company which takes its name from Dr. Jemima has since expanded its reach from its humble beginnings in Georgia to include, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and Texas.   And Jemima’s Playhouse is just taking off!

BahamaMan has become one of the favorite characters in Jemima’s Playhouse’s constellation of characters.  And for good reason!  He teaches students the importance of social responsibility.  With a smile and a sprinkling of adventure. As a Bahamian ambassador, BahamaMan never neglects to invite each student to visit the place of his birth – the iconic and mysterious Glass Window Bridge, on Eleuthera, Bahamas, where the roaring deep-blue Atlantic Ocean meets the tranquil blue-green Bahamian Sea.

Jemima’s Playhouse is a children’s entertainment company which continues to grow and evolve.  It now visits over 2 million students every year in Georgia, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and Texas.

The company’s creative and interactive entertainment approach to children incorporates animated stories, creative dramatics, original songs, and characters which help children between the ages of 2 and 8 years old develop their imagination and communication skills.  Now, students and parents could download the BahamaMan book, song, and music video from the Jemima’s Playhouse website so that they could be inspired by his legacy of love, peace and goodwill. 

Said Dr. Tyrone, “The growth of Jemima’s Playhouse – and the growth of BahamaMan – have been simply incredible!  Dr. Jemima and I are merely along for the ride.  Our only goal is to entertain students between the ages of two and twelve, while seamlessly educating them.”  

Contact: Dr. Tyrone Sawyer II ([email protected]) (770) 462-2499

Retired Boxing Hall of Fame Rescheduled

PRESS RELEASE – The Retired Boxers Association Inaugural Hall of Fame Awards program originally scheduled for Sunday, September 18th has been postponed and will now take place at a date to be announced in late October.

A spokesman for the organization said that the event was put off because of circumstances beyond the control of the organizers.  However, plans are being made to hold the event in late October at the same venue – JCN Broadcast Centre on University Drive.

The Association will induct Oswald ‘Elisha Obed’ Ferguson, Gomeo Brennen, William ‘Yama Bahama’ Butler Jr., Ray Minus Sr., Nathaniel ‘Nat’ Knowles, Garry Davis, Charlie Major Sr., Kirkwood ‘Baby Boy’ Rolle, Leonard ‘Boston Blackie’ Miller, Bertram ‘Bert Perry’ Perigord, Wilfred Coakley Jr., Wilfred ‘Battling’ Douglas and Andre Seymour into the Hall of Fame Class of 2022 and recognize Taureano Johnson, Ray Minus Sr., George ‘Boo’ Wilmore, Everette Jackson, L. Garth Wright, Gladstone Thurston, Chris Malakius, Kirkwood ‘Baby Boy’ Rolle, Roger Kelty, Charlie Major Sr. , Wilfred Coakley Jr., Frederick Sturrup and Valentino Knowles for their outstanding contribution to amateur and professional boxing.

GB Christian Council, GBPA, and Government in joint Hurricane Dorian Memorial

By Fred Sturrup |GB News Editor | [email protected]

The theme at the well-attended Hurricane Dorian Memorial Service on Sunday, September 2, at St. John’s Jubilee Cathedral in Freeport, Grand Bahama was, “Prayer.” Indeed, the male and female ministers of the gospel were fully, and deservedly recognized for being prayer warriors while Grand Bahamians and those in the neighboring island of Abaco, were riding out the monster category 5 Hurricane Dorian during the very last days of August, and early September in 2019.

One podium visitor, understanding the value of prayer always, but especially in times of crisis, urged the audience to pray even more. Other than the ministers who head various congregations, present for the occasion were representatives of the Government of The Bahamas, headed by Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Chester Cooper. In place also was the Official Opposition Leader Hon. Michael Pintard.

GB Christian Council President, Rev. Kenneth Lewis was most inspirational while giving remarks of comfort. He extolled the collective role of the praying ministers, and also made particular mention of the Grand Bahama Port Authority, that entity always on the leading edge of restoration after disasters in Grand Bahama. Although functioning a bit under the radar sometimes, as government officials grab the headlines, the GBPA has been valiant through the years in bringing some semblance of order to Grand Bahamian lives, following disastrous circumstances. On Sunday, GBPA President Ian Rolle represented Chairman Sarah St. George, and offered words of encouragement to the family members and friends who lost loved ones, 32 of them, to the horrific storm; and emphasized the continued commitment of the organization to Grand Bahama and its people.

Deputy PM Cooper who is also the Minister for Tourism and Aviation, expressed on behalf of Prime Minister Hon. Philip Davis, the government’s ongoing efforts at the full restoration of Grand Bahma and a meaningful economic recovery. He said information on future plans of the government for Grand Bahama will come later.

The second most influential person in the present Davis Administration, Cooper also paid a compliment to Opposition Leader Pintard, who, while at the podium, reached out a hand to the leading political party to join together in helping with the recovery process in Grand Bahama. 

It was Rev. Lewis who connected most profoundly with all within his hearing, however, his primary message being that “Jesus” watches over us at all times, as He continues to prepare a place for each of us (who do His bidding) in the house of His Father, God.

In all, a jolly good celebration time, prompted by moderator Minister Mary Russell was had by the congregation. 

Words of warmth, wisdom and encouragement came also from Bishop Godfrey Williams who extended the welcome to Jubilee Cathedral; and Minister for Grand Bahama, Hon. Ginger Moxey; among others. Terri Johnson, the music teacher at Sunland Baptist Academy; the singing pastor of Canaan Zion Baptist, Apostle Washington Williams; and Rev. Rudolph Roberts, pastor of the Wholeman Christian Center; were spiritually stunning as they sang.

Three years after Dorian, though, there is much, much, more to be done for the displaced citizens, and for sure, the healing continues.