From: S. Andre Rollins
To: Members of the Public and Press
Re: My Decision
Date: February 16, 2011
After giving thoughtful consideration to the unsatisfactory state of the institutional, economic and social progress of our nation; the vastly untapped potential of our islands and our people; and the growing feelings of distrust in government’s desire to create true economic empowerment and an improved quality of life for the maximum number of its citizens, I have concluded that presently our national problems are great, yet a comprehensive plan to solve them has not been articulated; our big dreams and aspirations as a nation, which were heralded by independence, are still largely unrealized; the burdens of our people are too heavy and our opportunities for advancement are too few; our prospects for a bright future are unacceptably dim and in this fast-moving global economy, the time remaining for us to change our circumstances is short, before it becomes too late. Therefore, it is my strong conviction that it is neither wise, nor practical, to continue pursuing the development of a new political party in an environment of scarce resources and weak public demand; where prospects for success are long-term at best; and with so much at stake in our nation’s immediate future. The time to introduce national reform is now. A period pivotal to The Bahamas’ future is at hand.
It is still my belief that Bahamians want to see change in our nation’s politics, because they realize the critical role that government must play in correcting the now regressive course of our national development. However, I am now convinced that most Bahamians are looking for that change to come from within one of the established political parties, rather than from an upstart group of political newcomers. Like them, I share their idealism concerning the imperfections of these parties, but appreciate the importance of pragmatism in strategically solving our national problems.
This appreciation has led me to encourage the leadership of the National Development Party to discuss with the membership, the viability of merging with the major party whose principles and philosophies most closely resemble the principles and philosophies espoused by the NDP, since this will provide the most realistic means of translating NDP ideas into national policies and programs that are crucial for significant future growth and development. It is my view that the Progressive Liberal Party is the only major political organization that meets this fundamental criterion. Just as I believe in our nation’s potential for greatness, despite our present shortcomings, I am also confident that notwithstanding the PLP’s imperfections, this groundbreaking party still possesses the capacity for change.
While most of us concede how strong and compelling the case for such a merger, the current statements and actions of the NDP indicate that they are not now ready to merge. Whatever the party’s ultimate decision, they know that I shall respect their right to proceed as they deem best, yet hold out hope that we will be of one accord; but I have decided to act now; to follow my convictions; and to proudly join the PLP.
S. Andre Rollins, D.M.D.