Member Tommy Turnquest, Speaker Alvin Smith and Frank Smith in the House of Assembly Wednesday morning. Government members sought to silence Frank Smith as he raised concerns to Parliament from his constituents.
Nassau, The Bahamas – Member of Parliament Frank Smith was asked to leave the House of Assembly by House Speaker Alvin Smith as he tied to make a statement on behalf of his constituents on the issue of a reported lawsuit filed against him. A lawsuit was announced to been filed in the courts by the State Minister Zharvigo Laing.
Laing filed a lawsuit against members Frank Smith and Bernard Nottage, along with former Comptroller of Customs John Rolle over statements made in the media on the Mona Vie Scandal.
But if those members are truly facing actions by Laing for their statements on Mona Vie, why was not the ‘Bias Media’ in The Bahamas which carried those statements also included in the lawsuit?
Government members closed ranks to protect the state minister asking the Speaker to disallow the member [Smith] from speaking on a matter referring to the concerns of his constituents. Speaker of the House silenced Frank Smith asking him repeatedly to sit. The Speaker finally asked Frank Smith to remove himself from the floor of the House, causing members of the opposition to raise stark objection to the Speaker’s ruling.
Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham, then asked the leader of the opposition to advise his member to obey the ruling of the Speaker. It was at that point whilst opposition leader began to object to the Speaker’s decision, that the Speaker called for a ten minute recess.
Upon returning to the House, the Speaker continued his ruling against Frank Smith and thus all members of the opposition left the chamber of the House of Assembly in protest of the Speaker’s decision.
What is interesting however in all this, Laing and the scandal of the Mona Vie drink, is raising its ugly head again.