PLP Backstabs Their Own Supporters

Friday 24th, May 2013 / 08:38 Published by

The ongoing public spat between Algernon Cargill and the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) gets curiouser and curiouser by the day.

There are now reports that Cargill has finally been fired as NIB director, after being suspended by the PLP government in late 2012. Subsequent to Cargills suspension has been a lengthy auditing exercise which was conducted by Grant Thornton Bahamas at a cost of a whopping $861,000. The main bone of contention appears to be the $723,333 which eight NIB executives as well as one person on contract pocketed between January 2010 and May 2012. Cargill received $194,791.66 in bonus payments. The PLP considers the bonus payments to be outrageous.

It must be borne in mind that the period of January 2010 through May 2012 coincided with one of the worst economic periods in the post-Great Depression era. While thousands of Bahamian families have had to tighten their belts due to severe financial constraints brought on by the sagging economy, NIB executives pocketed hundreds of thousands of dollars in bonuses. This is the spin that has been put on the bonus pay-outs by Cargills detractors.

However, even Cargills detractors would have to admit that he did a yeomans job at going after delinquent NIB contributors who are prominent businesspersons. I believe he created many adversaries in the process. With Cargill at the helm, NIB was at its zenith. One could argue that he was the best director NIB ever had, since its creation in the early seventies. Under Cargills watchful eyes, NIBs financial assets grew exponentially. While not rendering a value judgment on the hefty bonuses, I would say that the NIB executives should have informed the former FNM national insurance minister of the bonus payments. In this regard, they exercised poor discretion. Moreover, had Hubert Ingraham known of the bonus payments, he would have brought them to a screeching halt.

I am not surprised that the PLP has gone after Cargill. What surprises me, though, is the news of Cargills deep roots in the PLP. According to The Tribune, Cargills late father was a stalwart councillor of the PLP. His oldest brother is currently a PLP stalwart councillor and his entire family that resides in Yamacraw are loyal supporters of PLP MP Melanie Griffin. I find it curious that the only ones to come to Cargills rescue are FNM supporters, particularly The Tribune and a popular Facebook group.

One can argue that this is yet another episode of PLPs fighting among themselves. Considering what the PLP has put Cargill through since last year, if the PLP can do this to one of its own, what would it do to those on the other side of the political divide? The very thought sends shivers down my spine.

To date, no high profile PLP has come out publicly in Cargills support, even though he is one of their own. It would now appear that the PLP has hung Cargill out to dry. Assuming that he voted for Melanie Griffin in 2012, one can only wonder if the former NIB director now deeply regrets his decision.

Despite being a quintessential PLP, Ingraham hired him to head NIB because of his impeccable credentials as a successful white-collar professional. The very party his family has thrown its collective weight behind since Pindling has now dragged him through the mud in the public domain. Whatever is the final outcome of this saga, Cargills life will never be the same. I wonder if he is still a PLP!

Kevin Evans
Freeport, Grand Bahama
May, 2013

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