By Fred Sturrup | GB News Editor | [email protected]
Recently during a high level meeting arranged by the Official Opposition in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, the Free National Movement, reportedly there was contention. The situation boiled over into an embarrassing, brutal physical altercation that left a noted party supporter seriously injured. Eye witnesses informed that he was savagely put upon by a fellow strong FNM proponent, who has differing views regarding Dr. Hubert Alexander Minnis who led the party to defeat last September.
The Hon. Michael Pintard is the sitting leader of the FNM. He attained such status in a democratic fashion, decisively. Dr. Minnis is the seemingly bitter former leader, who did not offer himself for the role when Pintard disposed of several others through the “in order” convention voting process.
As I pointed out in an earlier opinion piece it doesn’t appear that Dr. Minnis is going away. The view here is that he continues to grandstand, is not really respectful of Leader Pintard, and there is, accordingly, this emotional spillover to his supporters. Thus the FNM party is in deep crisis. Pintard’s leadership is being assailed.
This is unfair and unprecedented in Bahamian politics.
This atrocious scenario never came about before because politicians and their followers of the past, though many of them were strong-minded, their characters did not lend themselves to violence against each other.
The country’s first political party, the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) saw the leadership pass from Henry Milton Taylor to Lynden Oscar Pindling. Taylor and a few others were bitter about the new kids on the block taking over, but there was not much of a thought of challenging the new order.
After Pindling’s 30-plus years of leadership, Perry Gladstone Christie emerged as leader. There was the expected resentment and disappointment felt by those who preferred Dr. Bernard Nottage, but the party moved on handsomely. Christie delayed his time in PLP leadership, by failing to live up to his own reported time table to demit office. However, present PLP Leader and Prime Minister Philip “Brave” Davis bided his time, and look where he is today!
The second political party in the country which produced the first government, the United Bahamian Party, had a very smooth transition from the longtime leader Sir Roland Symonette era to Sir Jeffery Johnstone.
The FNM itself, went through many changes, in true democratic fashion, never burdened by anything such as inside troublemakers, apparently trying feverishly/violently to frustrate the leadership of one Michael Pintard.
This is not right. Let the man do his job in peace.
From Sir Cecil Wallace to Sir Kendal Isaacs and back to Sir Cecil; to the three-time prime minister Hubert Alexander Ingraham; to Dr. Minnis; with interim leaders in place such as John Henry Bostwick, Cyril Tynes, and Tommy Turnquest; the FNM never faced anything even close to the present debacle.
It is therefore incumbent upon Pintard and the others within the FNM who have rationale, to immediately put the house in order.