The FNM while campaigning for the 2017 General Elections,
promised to deliver to The Bahamas clean governance with specific emphasis on
promoting high levels of transparency, accountability and integrity once they
won those elections.
From time to time, members of the FNM were heard chastising
the then PLP Government for its arrogance, excessiveness and failure to listen
as well as respond effectively to the needs of the populace.
They were heard demonising the Government in many respects
and promising to never govern in their own interest, but rather in the interest
of the populace, again with heavy emphasis being placed on ethics, morality and
Now in Government with a huge majority, the FNM seems to
have thrown some of their core principles out of the window. Not only is the
Government now justifying wrong doings, both clandestine and clear as day, but
it appears to have developed a knack for shielding its Ministers from public scrutiny
Only recently, two senior Ministers were judicially
condemned for their part in the investigation of alleged malfeasance by two
former PLP Ministers.
There has been thunderous calls by all and sundry that
these FNM Minister resign or be fired by the Prime Minister. Both Ministers had
the temerity to shamefully defend their behavior and refused to resign. The
Prime Minister’s refusal to fire them, clearly suggests that he condoned their
behavior in these matters.
The leasing of space by the government, from one of its
Cabinet Ministers, after abandoning the construction of a permanent location
for the Post Office, that was started under the previous government, in my view
was unethical to say the least and was a brazen act of conflict of interest,
and abuse of power, spurred by the FNM’s desire to compensate this Minister for
his financial contributions to the party, that probably contributed mightily to
its success at the polls.
And there is more. Their decisions to unjustly dismiss
thousands of public service workers while personally attacking others because
of their link to the PLP; the sole-sourcing of numerous contracts for various
projects and goods as well as services from FNM financiers and supporters; the
creation of jobs for the boys in almost every Government agency and Ministry
without justifiable cause; and the continued assault on parliamentary democracy
by running not well-thought-out or prepared bills through Parliament without
That aside, the Government has much to explain about its
frequent travels abroad and its politicisation of the State bureaucracy with
party hopefuls and diaspora rejects.
The truth is, integrity and good governance demand that the
Government, at least, clearly explain its intentions and modus operandi when
certain concerns are raised by the populace. But the only response is a
national address here and there, as they abandoned the weekly press conferences
held by the Prime Minister’s Press Secretary. There is mostly silence on the
part of the Prime Minister about core matters that run deep to the core of the
decisions being made every day by the Government appointed advisers, his
Ministers and their political agents.
This is not the change nor integrity in politics much less good governance that
was promised by the FNM.