Oswald Brown Writes!
By OSWALD T. BROWN
So it turns out that I am not the only person who is convinced that Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham is an absolute dictator. All this week, the Nassau Guardian has been publishing a series of sensational articles based on classified diplomatic cables released publicly by WikiLeaks, and in today’s edition (May 25) the morning daily sent shock waves throughout the country with the stunning claim that former Bahamas Democratic Movement (BDM) leader Cassius Stuart “compared” Ingraham to a dictator.
According to the Guardian’s article, during discussions with a United States official prior to the Elizabeth by-election in February of 2010, Stuart “likened” Ingraham to Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe and accused the Prime Minister of “letting the country go to hell and allowing it to be bought by China.”
What makes these assertions by Stuart so embarrassing for him personally as well as for Ingraham, as leader of the Free National Movement (FNM), is that Stuart is now a member of the FNM, having been welcomed into the party like a rock star along with several other members of the BDM in April of this year. Amidst deafening cheers from members of the FNM, the welcoming “ceremony” was held at FNM headquarters on Mackey Street in New Providence and was presided over by the Prime Minister, who noted at the time that Stuart and the other BDM members had “sought a party that they believe will best honour their aspirations and vision for The Bahamas.”
Obviously it didn’t matter to Ingraham that there was absolutely nothing in Stuart’s political history to suggest that he shared the same “aspirations and vision for The Bahamas” as Ingraham and the FNM supposedly do. In fact, the exact opposite was true. Stuart and the other BDM members were outspoken critics of Ingraham and the FNM. Indeed, they vehemently disagreed with Ingraham’s policies. Just a short time earlier, during the debate on the sale of BTC to Cable & Wireless, Stuart publicly spoke out against the very unpopular decision by Ingraham to practically giveaway a profitable Bahamian corporation.
This and numerous other public declarations by Stuart of his opposition to FNM policies should have forewarned Ingraham that Stuart only decided to join the FNM because his previous eleven years as leader of the BDM had gotten him no closer to a seat in the House of Assembly than when he visited that august chamber during a session.
But with a general election scheduled to be held before May of 2012, Ingraham was desperate. His personal popularity and the overall popularity of the FNM had declined considerably because of his dictatorial tendencies and bad governance in general. Despite their differences, however, Ingraham felt that Stuart was a good “catch,” although as a newcomer to the FNM, nominating him for a relatively “safe” FNM seat certainly would cause dissension among politically ambitious die-hard FNMs. Being the absolute dictator that he is, however, Ingraham did not view this as something to lose sleep over because he knew that no one would dare question his decision.
The big question now is this: Will Cassius Stuart still be a candidate for the FNM in the next election?
That’s no longer a guarantee. There should be no doubt in anyone’s mind that Hubert Alexander Ingraham does not like being publicly humiliated and disrespected in this manner. This certainly is one of those cases where a simple apology will not do; after all, Ingraham has a “reputation” to protect. If he does not deal with Stuart harshly, his “bulldog” approach to keeping members of the FNM’s hierarchy in check may no longer be effective. What’s more, those members of his over-bloated cabinet who share Stuart’s view that he is a dictator may decide that they no longer have to put up with his dictatorial behavior and cower in fear to protect their lucrative salaries.
Actually, if Stuart is an honourable man, although they say there’s no honour among politicians, he will resign from the FNM and close the book on his political career. It now appears that rather than join the FNM, his best move would have been to join forces with Branville McCartney and assist him in his efforts to turn the Democratic National Alliance (DNA) into a viable third party. He may have even been better off joining the PLP, whose philosophy is more in line with what he used to promote in the BDM. But both of those doors may now be closed to him because he clearly has no credibility left as a potential politician.
My guess is that Hubert “THE DICTATOR” Ingraham, whom he made a laughing stock of, is about to prove to Cassius Stuart that he was absolutely correct when he “likened” him to Mugabe.
FNMs KEEP YA EYE ON HIM!!!!