On May 10, The Free National Movement secured a landslide victory at the polls. Armed with a myriad of pre-election promises on how to improve the lives of Bahamians, the Minnis led opposition rode a wave of anti-PLP sentiment into office and declared that after 5 years of lackluster governance it would finally be The People’s Time. Unfortunately, more than 100 days into this term, it has become painfully clear that the FNM, though clearly capable of winning the election, was not prepared to govern.
On the campaign trail, the party’s leadership unveiled a substantial list of promises which they pledged would be part of an immediate plan of action designed to improve the lives of Bahamians. Since then however, the Minnis administration has offered no detailed plans on the way forward, an admission which came from the party’s own chairman who conceded that there have been no “earth shattering accomplishments” made by the government in its first 100 days. Instead, the Prime Minister and his cabinet continue to speak in the vague generalities usually reserved for the rally stage; but the time for rally talk is OVER!
While the government has been consumed with the arrests of former politicians – a move which in isolation is an important part of efforts to root out corruption – they have ignored the needs of the persons who voted them in. Families being crushed by the weight of the oppressive Value Added Tax and who were promised a repeal of that tax on popular bread basket items, continue to suffer. Business owners and budding entrepreneurs who have, over the years found themselves buried by miles of red tape, and who were promised a greater sense of ease in conducting their affairs, continue to face challenges. Similarly, Bahamians in over the hill communities who bought into the Prime Minister’s promised initiatives for the revitalization of those areas have been left with absolutely NOTHING to show for all the PM’s grandiose promises.
Though on the front line of the issue while in opposition, the government has yet to unveil any plans to address the longstanding issues at the New Providence landfill resorting instead to the exact same rhetoric used by the administration before them. Even with an environmental activist at the helm of the Ministry responsible it appears that the government is equally ill equipped to finally fix the dump.
Equally disappointing to the DNA has been the total lack of movement by this government to fully implement the Freedom of Information Act. Though extremely vocal while in opposition the government has made no effort to fully enact the legislation. In the interim, the country continues to be denied the benefits promised by a government who swore a commitment to true transparency.
Since taking office the FNM has resorted to using much the same tired political rhetoric we have become use to. Like the Christie administration before it, this Minnis led government has spent considerable time lamenting the situation left behind by those before. They have publicly decried the deficiencies in governance but have taken little action to address them. While bemoaning the state of the country’s finances they have taken no definitive steps to address the situation. While the DNA and voting public is not so naïve as to believe that the country’s current economic situation is not a hindrance to the execution of some of the promised initiatives it is equally important to note that many of these necessary changes require no actual funding to execute.
Ahead of the May 10th general elections Bahamians were promised visionary leadership and good governance. Since then however, we’ve gotten much of the same old same. We hope that this administration will finally take the necessary steps to live up to its many promises and work to create A Better Life for ALL BAHAMIANS AND THOSE WHO HAVE A RIGHT TO BE HERE!