The National Debate – BTC Sale to Cable & Wireless
Over the last two weeks the National Debate on the sale of 51% of BTC to Cable & Wireless (C&W) has immensely intensified since the announcement by the Government of its intention. As a wave of ‘national opposition’ towards this sale continue to swell, the Government, led by Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham and members of his cabinet and also the leaders of the BTC privatization committee have all embarked on a major public relations program. All of this in an attempt to convince adept Bahamians that this proposed sale is in the best interest of the Bahamas.
These groups of misguided personalities including Executives of Cable and Wireless all have hit the airways in droves in an effort to support this “sweetheart deal”. In fact the creators of this deal sound so convincing over the airwaves they are starting sound as if they ‘truly believe’ their own propaganda. However all Bahamians from all sides of the political divide are not buying into the hype.
Much to their dismay their P.R. campaign has been ineffective. Right-thinking Bahamians have acknowledged the stellar job that Mr. Leon Williams the former President and CEO of BTC is currently doing to enlighten the public to the facts of this proposed sale.
Mr. Williams has clearly exposed the ‘facts & figures’ to educate the Bahamian People otherwise concerning the proposed sale of BTC to C&W. We all know that ‘facts & figures’ do not lie.
To his credit and although he has many reasons to; Mr. Williams, wisely has not injected ‘politics’ into the equation of his presentations.
Despite efforts of the likes of the Prime Minister and others including executives of Cable and Wireless the PLP acknowledges the BCPOU, the BCMU and other national unions Leadership who are strongly opposed to Cable & Wireless as the purchasing entity of BTC.
The PLP holds fast to the belief that the sale of BTC to C&W is a ‘national issue’ and not a political issue as there is a general concurrence on the Privatization of BTC. We therefore will rightly do battle in the Halls of Parliament against this foolish, sweetheart proposition by the FNM.
To this end the primary spokespersons outside the Halls of Parliament have been primarily the Party’s Chairman, the Leader and Deputy Leader. This position by the PLP has been clearly demonstrated with the ongoing Senate Debates, as opposition members, despite attempts to be censored, continue to hammer the Government for not making public the details of the Memorandum of Understanding on the BTC / C&W Deal.
We conclude by stating the government continues to stubbornly proceed with this bad deal despite mounting national opposition by the People of the Bahamas. Considering the above factors, the PLP again call on the Prime Minister to make public the details of the sale by releasing the Memorandum of Understanding on the BTC / C&W Deal without further delay. More importantly, we call on the government to listen to the majority of the People and cancel the Government’s plans to sell BTC to Cable & Wireless.