Bahamians trust Christie and his competent team to take the country to a NEW DAY!
Nassau, Bahamas — Former Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance, Zhivargo Laing, has had plenty to say in the past 24 hours about what the new government is not doing to get spending under control in the country.
His comments came following a report by S&P in which negative growth is projected. The report cited how the $100 million cost overruns on the road project along with other reckless spending practices of the failed FNM administration influenced their findings. Laing, some we know have forgotten, was a part of those bad decisions that have created this decline.
Sensible people in the country know Laing has no credibility. Sensible people in the country knows Laing was part and parcel of the wrecking machine deep in the bowels of the former administration that: raised taxes, increased spending, deepened the deficit, doubled unemployment, hindered investor confidence, reversed growth, and left the current state of the economy as an inheritance for Bahamians yet unborn.
However, Bahamians were not prepared for the conditions to continue and they elected a new PLP Administration to turn the country in a New Direction.
Fact is: people like Laing should crawl back into their shells, rot deep inside and have nothing to say about anything in reference to the Bahamian economy.
And this is where we fight with the WUTLESS MEDIA in this country.
Rather than asking Laing when is he going to explain to the Bahamian people how he paid himself more than his Cabinet colleagues, they ask him about the new administration?
When is Laing going to explain how he paid himself $6,000 more than Loretta Butler-Turner and Phenton Neymour? Why were the extra funds paid? What was it for? And when is he going to pay the sum back to the Public Treasury of The Bahamas?
Fact is it was Laing and the fired FNM that brought the Bahamian economy to its knees and to the brink of the economic collapse now under review by S & P.
Up to May 7th under the FNM Administration there were no new foreign investors in the Bahamas or lined up at the bar to generate any kind of direct investments to stimulate our fragile economy.
The GONE FNM Government had to arrange to borrow US$125 MILLION as a standby credit to prop up the external reserves from falling below the two-month import level.
Average liquidity in the system dropped to a low of $68 millon, perhaps the lowest in post-independence Bahamas.
The Ingraham government had an overdraft on their recurrent account with RBC that was in excess of $100 million waiting to be paid down from this figure, as well as other bills outstanding.
Ingraham’s reckless fiscal incompetence, along with his political lapdog Laing and lacklustre Cabinet, left Bahamians in a worse state then when they met them. Prior to Mr. Christie’s departure in 2007, the world knew The Bahamas was headed in the right direction
Mr. Christie’s strategy eventually paid great dividends! And don’t take our word for it – just read what S & P and Moody’s said about the Bahamian economy in early 2007. Here are some of the facts and conditions at play at the time:
Heads of Agreements for major investments in the Bahamas in 2007 totaled somewhere between a whopping $12 and $15 BILLION under the Christie Administration.
When the PLP left office in 2007, the revenue had increased to $1.4 BILLION and the country was able to pay its bills, stabilize its external reserves position significantly and allow Banks to repatriate their profits to their Head Offices.
That charged robust economy created a stimulus for the local economy by causing a reduction in the prime rate (from 6% to 5.5% in 2005), electricity tariff rates went down by 7 – 12%, real property taxes and incentives for first time home buyers for up to $250,000 were introduced – And on this point we note more than 5,000 families moved into new homes for the first time. (The FNM cannot boast the same and completed not single subdivision on New Providence in the last five years).
As Government revenue improved by 56%, Christie found exciting ways to not impose a single new tax on the backs of the poor between 2002 –2007 – another fact people like Laing cannot speak to under his watch at finance.
Under Christie, industry soared, tourism numbers improved, with stopover visitors creating record levels of 1.6 million in 2005 and 2006 and 1.527 million in 2007.
Mr. Christie’s government presented a record level of per capita expenditure of over $2 billion during his first term in office.
And with great pride, under Christie unemployment across the country was reduced to an irreducible minimum below 8% by 2007.
THESE ARE FACTS THE DAMN WUTLESS MEDIA IN THE BAHAMAS AND THE FNM CANNOT RECORD IN INGRAHAM’S SHAMEFUL YEARS AS PRIME MINISTER IN THE LAST FIVE YEARS!
And so, remembering the five years of prosperity and growth under Christie’s 2002 – 2007 PLP government, the Bahamian people returned to office a Caring Administration. They rehired an exciting crop of energized leaders who will take the Bahamas into a new direction far from the reckless abyss of financial ruin that Ingraham and his circus took us to these horrific last five years, a period that delivered unemployment among young Bahamians to the tune of 34%. It was a period that one educated Bahamian described as a “medieval disaster of colossal proportions”.
Former Minister of State in Finance Zhivargo Laing should have nothing to say about Bahamian financial matters. His record in office was shameful to say the least, and members of the WUTLESS MEDIA knows it!
Those are the facts, and as some would call it, the “Stubborn Truth!”