Perry Gladstone Christie
Leader, Progressive Liberal Party
Garden Hills Launch
February 24, 2012
Garden Hills – are you ready for a new day?!
Garden Hills – are you ready to make a MAJOR change?
Garden Hills – is that change Dr. Kendal Major?!!
Isn’t he extraordinary?
Kendal Major is one of the brightest stars in The Bahamas – a highly trained specialist, smart, committed, full of the energy and new ideas we need to lead The Bahamas forward.
I’m so proud to be a bridge between Sir Lynden Pindling and this new generation of PLP stars….we share the same values – we all believe deeply, profoundly – in our nation and in our people.
And beloved Bahamaland – we have steep challenges ahead – we better believe in each other if want to build a safe and a prosperous nation.
On crime, there is nationwide consensus – this government has failed – fundamentally failed – to keep Bahamians safe.
But the Prime Minister had the audacity to say he’s satisfied with his performance on crime.
How arrogant and out of touch do you have to be to tell a nation reeling from violence that everything’s just fine?
More than 440 murders on his watch – and he says things are just fine.
Last year, after a month in which we had more murders than any other previous month in our recorded history, what did Hubert Ingraham do? He took a vacation.
What did I do? I met with law enforcement, with experts, with clergy, with concerned citizens. I knew that the PLP had made a great start with Urban Renewal and Swift Justice and Witness Protection and School Policing – but I also knew it wasn’t enough, that we had to bring back those cancelled programmes and create new ideas, too.
So I worked with this new generation of PLP leaders and we put together an innovative plan to fight crime – a crime plan we’ve been sharing with Bahamians since last summer. It’s the only plan that really focuses on preventing crime – and it’s the only plan which proposes to intervene directly in the cycle of violence.
Ingraham’s starting to throw out some crumbs now, but the truth is, we need a leader who cares about crime all the time, not just at election time.
The PLP believes this election should be about big things – reducing violence, creating jobs, reducing the cost of energy, securing our borders, investing in Bahamians, putting Bahamians first.
But not the FNM – they’ll do almost anything to avoid those issues, avoid their record of failure.
You know, I’m almost – almost — starting to feel bad for the fellow.
There’s something terribly sad about what Hubert Ingraham has been reduced to.
The meaner he gets, the more he reminds Bahamians what a nasty bully he is when people are looking for a statesman.
The more low-down his insults, the more he offends Bahamians who are trying to raise their children with old-fashioned values.
The more he recycles old and discredited lies — lies he himself knows to be lies! — the more obvious it is how desperate he’s become.
It’s sad, isn’t it?
Fifteen of the last twenty years he’s been Prime Minister – but he never met a problem he couldn’t blame on someone else.
Fifteen of the last twenty years he’s been Prime Minister – now he’s tired and out of ideas.
Fifteen of the last twenty years he’s been Prime Minister – and all he’s got left is gutter lies and petty politics.
Let me give you an example – the national stadium opening tomorrow.
I’m so happy and excited our nation will have a stadium that lives up to the greatness of Bahamian competitors.
When I negotiated with the Chinese for that stadium, I was thinking about our amazing Bahamian world-class competitors, and how a new generation of athletes deserved a facility that honors their talent and determination.
I proposed and negotiated the Stadium. I worked to ensure the Chinese would increase the size and scope of their initial investment so that the final result would be an even bigger and better stadium. The Chinese bought into that and they built it according to our vision.
But there’s Ingraham acting like it was all his idea. Acting like he wielded the shovel himself.
How small-minded do you have to be to deny it’s a shared accomplishment, a national achievement of which every Bahamian ought to be proud?
This small-mindedness – this worship of petty politics instead of the national good – it doesn’t just cheapen and degrade him — it hurts The Bahamas.
It sets us back as a people.
When Ingraham dismantled Urban Renewal because it was a PLP programme, he hurt The Bahamas.
When he stopped School Policing and Witness Protection because they were PLP programmes, he hurt The Bahamas.
When he let some private feud with Hannes Babek get in the way of working with the Port Authority to get Grand Bahama back on its feet, he hurt The Bahamas.
When he held up projects and contracts initiated by the PLP, he hurt Bahamians who needed jobs – the international agency, Standard and Poor’s, said as much.
And when Ingraham tells vicious lies about PLP leaders , he sends all the wrong messages to young Bahamians about a life in public service.
In 2007, the FNM ran their campaign on the very same lies. They’re dusting off their old speeches and giving them all over again.
But Bahamians have seen this movie before! We know how it ends! When they take power – nothing! All their wild allegations – no charges are brought! Not a single finding of wrong-doing! Either their investigations turn up nothing or they don’t even bother to investigate!
Contrast that with their own sad story of scandal – think about the FNM Minister who gave a big, fat air-conditioning contract to one of his buddies in return for special favors. Or the FNM Minister who presided over the school repairs scandal. Or the FNM honcho who gave a big, juicy airport contract to a company he owned. Or the FNM Minister who abused his position to give customs favors to close relatives.
Now after five years of putting special interests first, of Brent Symonette getting millions richer from government contracts – with both hands and both feet in the cookie jar – they have the nerve and the hypocrisy to hold up old, discredited, recycled lies?
Like I said, it’s just sad.
And it’s sad and pathetic that Ingraham is choosing to end his time in public life this way – as liar-in-chief instead of commander-in-chief.
He may be a running a tired old campaign of lies – but we have a modern way of dealing with them. You see, we have an obligation to defend the reputation of the people he wrongly attacks. We’re going to do so – on BahamasTruth.org.
That’s where we’re going to deal with their sad and demented and tired old lies.
All those lies – they’re hoping to prevent us from talking about our new generation and our new ideas. That’s not going to happen.
BahamasTruth.org to see the real facts…
Myplp.org to see our exciting plans to fight crime and create jobs…
Bahamians, you know our nation is at a crossroads.
You don’t need to follow a small-minded bully down the low road!
That low road won’t take The Bahamas where we need to go.
Come join us on the high road!
We have a nation to build!
We have a country to make safe from violence!
We have an economy to expand! Jobs to create!
Let’s leave Ingraham in the gutter as we move together to greater heights.
There is no time to lose. We have a bright future to build!
PLP! ………PLP!…….. PLP!