Mar 29, 2023

RCL Paradise Project Exposes PM Flip Flop and Minister of Education Choice of Job Over Conscience

Minister Glenys Hanna-Martin public comments regarding her personal position on the Royal Caribbean Paradise Island project matter once again exposes the dysfunction of Davis’s Cabinet.

It is a well-known and universally acceptable principle of Westminster governance that Cabinet shares collective responsibility for all decisions of the Cabinet. Regardless of the personal position of a Minister, he or she must publicly support the decisions of Cabinet

or leave the Cabinet.

This principle is codified in the country’s Manual of Cabinet and Ministry Procedure that Minister Hanna-Martin is quite aware of. Two key clauses speak to this point:

3. A fundamental principle of “Cabinet Government” is unity. It is important
to present a united front to the public; if any Minister feels conscientiously unable to support a decision taken by Cabinet, he has one course open to him and that is to resign his office.

6. So long as a Minister remains a Minister he may not speak in public or in private against

a decision of Cabinet or against an individual decision of another Minister. As he is a member of the Government Bench in the House of Assembly or in the Senate, he must not speak or vote on any measure debated in either House otherwise. than on the lines agreed by Cabinet.

Clearly Minister Hanna-Martin is not prepared to live up to the terms of her employment

and believes that the Prime Minister based on his handling of the Alfred Sears and Jobeth Coleby-Davis matters does not have the courage to fire her.

The Prime Minister is governed by expedience and says what suits him at the moment. This was clearly his position when he criticized the FNM’s recent decision to approve in principle the RCL paradise project and the Toby Smith Lighthouse project. Davis now in government reversed his decision. RCL is a go but the Bahamian entrepreneur is back to square one! Hanna-Martin who love to chide the Opposition on collective responsibility wants to keep her job by staying in Cabinet while violating the terms of her employment.

The track record of Prime Minister Davis gives us absolutely no confidence that he has the courage and leadership resolve to make the only appropriate decision.

The public is seeing over and again that the Prime Minister is quick to demand that others follow the laws and the rules, but that his colleagues and cronies are exempt.

The Hon Michael C Pintard
Leader of His Majesty’s Loyal Opposition Leader of the Free National Movement

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