PLP STATEMENT: The Prime Minister is making a mockery of the whole process of investment in the country by this latest stumble in policy as seen and heard in yesterday’s press conference. His government and his policies now come off as shifting sands, sinking ground. His government’s word is entirely undependable. What does someone think of a Prime Minister who comes to Parliament asking Parliament to approve a project, having negotiated a new agreement with Bahamar and then unceremoniously abrogates that agreement by changing the rules in the middle of the game?
We warned him that there was a problem with the high foreign labour content. He was dismissive saying that a deal was a deal. We warned him of the consequences of default of the project falling onto the hands of a foreign state. He was dismissive and said a deal was a deal. Now it turns out that a deal is not a deal and he is prepared to flip and flop at every turn to save his political skin.
The PLP is not fooled. The Bahamian people are not fooled. This so called change of heart is designed simply to protect the commercial tourism interests which he represents. Is there any accident that the Kerzner operation was able to announce a position on their project which was remarkably similar to what the Prime Minister had to say?
We give some free advice to the Prime Minister: Stop thinking out aloud and making up public policy as you go. The country needs a project that will provide jobs for people and long term development for the country. We do not need a flip flopping Prime Minsiter who cannot make up his mind about what he wants to do and keeps shifting the goal posts on investors. His government is proving to be a whimsical and unreliable partner.
When we next need to hear from the Prime Minister is not his thinking out aloud but when the project will start, how many jobs will Bahamians get and what are the long term developmental results that he expects The Bahamar group to obtain from the project. Until then he should shut his mouth and not continue to embarrass himself and his government by stumbling around from policy to policy as he wakes up from day to day. How shameful and disgraceful can one be?
The facts are that the Bahamar project is the only major investment game in town and there is no other project of the magnitude of Bahamar on the horizon that offers the level capital injection, the level of jobs creation, the economic stimulation and public revenue generation that the weakened and challenged economy of the Bahamas so desperately needs.
The Prime Minister must stop pussyfooting around, get to work and get this deal done in the public interest.