An exuberant Christie and Nottage outside the Supreme Court yesterday. Perry Christie now has new political energy following his big win in Elizabeth.
PLP PRESS STATEMENT: The Progressive Liberal Party is pleased with the ruling of the Election Court in the Elizabeth Bye-Election challenge that confirmed Leo Ryan Pinder as the winner and lawful representative of the good people of Elizabeth; this is consistent with the unalienable rights and democratic will of the people of Elizabeth.
The PLP thanks the people of Elizabeth for being steadfast, patient, longsuffering, and focused in the face of rank and naked abuse of state power for purely political means. We thank our members, supporters and campaign workers for their vigilance, dogged tenacity, and unwavering loyalty under sometimes difficult conditions; your contributions to this victory are invaluable and incalculable. The PLP remains indebted to you.
The PLP thanks Leo Ryan Pinder MP Elect for his vision, courage, composure, and commitment to use all of his skills, knowledge, resources, and abilities to improve the lives of the good people of Elizabeth. We are confident that Ryan will elevate the quality of the national discourse in the halls of parliament as he becomes a powerful voice and advocate for the good people of Elizabeth and the Bahamas in general.
Finally we thank our illustrious legal team led by PLP deputy leader Philip “Brave” Davis. His support team comprised Wayne Munroe, Valentine Grimes, Keod Smith, and Damien Gomez. The team performed most excellently.
The PLP would be remiss if it did not state for the record that the Judiciary – this third, equal, and independent branch of government – is the last defense of our democracy and in that hallowed place, the Supreme Law is interpreted and applied, not made. Implications, hints, and innuendos that laws are made in the courts are contemptuous as such inflammatory remarks undermine democracy and its chief defender, the Judiciary.
The ill-advised public pronouncement by the Prime Minister that “we (the FNM) are democrats; we win elections on the ground, not in the courts” was inappropriate by any standard of democracy because this unseemly remark implied that the associated legal processes mandated by law (and designed ostensibly to protect democratic rights) somehow make the electoral process less democratic and by extension, de-legitimizing the eventual winner in an election court challenge. The PLP condemns this remark as contemptuous of the judicial process and disrespectful to the candidates and voters alike. The Prime Minister must apologize to the nation forthwith.
It is both ironic and noteworthy that it was a decision of an Election Court that brought to an end the Parliamentary tenure of Leo Marvin Pinder, father of Leo Ryan Pinder, who himself enters Parliament as a result of the findings of an Election Court.
Once again, we thank all for delivering this victory for this auspicious event is not only a victory for the PLP, but indeed a sound victory for democracy, the good people of Elizabeth, and the Bahamian people at large.