PINTARD SAYS IT’S TIME TO GOVERN AND THAT WE NEED SUBSTANCE OVER FORM

Oct 13, 2022

One year into the Davis Administration and already we are witnessing the unfortunate outcomes of a distracted government that is engaged endless public relations stunts, excessive foreign travel, daily posturing and delaying serious urgent decisions. Having selected the low lying fruits they met ripe for the picking, the PLP has refused take on the tough and sometimes controversial challenges our people face. Their narrow tribalistic politics has caused them to discard some important policy positions that could have saved our country reputational damage and our citizens millions of dollars.

We in the FNM have constantly admonished this PLP Government to put down the endless political campaigning and to take up their responsibilities for governance. They have refused to do so and now the entire country must pay for their politicking and grandstanding.

Under Davis’ stewardship, The Bahamas has been blacklisted despite meeting in place the plan of action to avoid such an outcome. The Bahamas has now been downgraded by Moody’s. There is a spike in the homicide rate, an increase of around 18 per cent while government officials boast that their plan is working. We have unchecked inflation. We have Bahamian tax payers paying $90 million to Shell to keep BPL from a financial meltdown caused by this government’s inaction and inattention.

Many of these troubling developments could have been avoided – or at a minimum they could have been mitigated by a government that was committed to more working and less flossing.

The Prime Minister committed to the OECD body over three separate letters that he would fix the issues that led to the blacklisting. He failed to deliver.

The Prime Minister claimed that their fiscal and economic plan was working – but then set about to break the law by breaching the requirement of the Fiscal Responsibility Act to stick to the deficit target in the budget that they set in their own Fiscal Strategy Report 2021. This action and their ongoing failure to produce the statutorily required monthly budget report on time, clearly contributed to the decision by Moody’s to downgrade the country’s credit rating. In previous press statements and contributions in Parliament we warned the Prime Minister that his decision not to follow the law would cost us locally and internationally.

The Prime Minister has postured and pontificated on crime. Yet, despite the fact that the FNM and others have demonstrated a willingness to work on the serious and non- partisan issue of crime, the government has not been open to taking the recommendations of others and working with all stakeholders to address this most critical issue. Instead, he seeks to convince the public that we canceled some of their past initiatives without being able to identify such initiatives.

The Prime Minister earlier promised that he would not approve BPL surcharge increases of 3.2 cents, countering the recommendations of his own appointed Board. His ill- considered meddling and the failure of the government to continue purchases under the hedge facility have made the situation for BPL much worse and has now saddled the tax payer with tens of millions of dollars in a BPL bailout.

Enough is enough! We repeat our calls for this government to scale back the foreign trips, to cut down on the events and receptions and the photo-ops and to get on with the serious business of governance. We face a challenging local and global environment which requires leaders with resolve who are prepared to make the tough calls and work for the benefit of the Bahamian people. If they are not prepared or able to do so, they should do the honourable thing and step aside in favor for those persons who are prepared to provide better stewardship to our beloved country.

The Hon Michael C Pintard

Leader of His Majesty’s Loyal Opposition Leader of the Free National Movement

Pin It on Pinterest