Free National Movement (FNM) Senator Zhivargo Laing has announced his intention to resign from the Senate at the end of the year, citing “deeply personal” reasons.
Laing who also serves as the party’s Shadow Minister of Finance said he notified FNM leader Dr. Hubert Minnis of his plans after careful consideration in a letter dated November 9, 2012.
“I advised the leader of the opposition that after careful thought, I have decided not to remain in the Senate beyond the end of this year.
“As such, I will be tendering my resignation from the Senate and as Shadow Minister of Finance with effect from the 31st December, 2012,” he said in a statement.
Laing said his decision to exit his posts is not a reflection of his party or its current leader and he wanted to give Minnis sufficient time to find a replacement to fill the posts.
“My decision to resign is deeply personal and in no way reflects upon the leader or my party, the Free National Movement.
“I fully expect that my life, going forward will involve much travel and activities that will make it challenging for me to give the level of service to the Senate that would be required,” he said.
Laing noted that although he has only served as Senator for a short period, he thanked the party leader for putting his trust in him and has committed to rendering assistance to him and the FNM party whenever it is needed.?
“I thank the Bahamian people and the public for its support and will continue to work where I can to advance the cause of the Bahamian people and The Commonwealth of The Bahamas,” he said.
Laing who was the Member of Parliament for the Marco City constituency during the FNM’s last term in office went up against Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) candidate Dr. Andre Rollins in the Fort Charlotte constituency on New Providence in the May 7 general election and was defeated in his electoral bid.
He was subsequently appointed as one of the FNM’s senators.
Laing’s pending resignation adds to the shifting landscape of the FNM party since the May 7 general election.
Following the party’s defeat at the polls, former Primer Minister Hubert Ingraham in his concession speech retired as leader of the party and announced that he would not take his seat in the House of Assembly and would resign his post despite being re-elected as Member of Parliament for North Abaco.
Ingrahan stayed on as leader until Dr. Hubert Minnis was appointed as the party’s leader and resigned as Member of Parliament for North Abaco on August 31, 2012 paving the way for FNM candidate Greg Gomez to run against PLP candidate Renardo Curry in the North Abaco by-election, who Gomez lost to.
The party then lost its chairman Charles Maynard who died of a massive heart attack while campaigning in North Abaco for the by-election.
Former senator Darron Cash was appointed as the party’s acting chairman.
According to reports, in a recent e-mail to seniors in the FNM, Cash said he would not seek a nomination for or accept the chairmanship because he and Dr. Hubert Minnis had different views on how the party should be led, but he has since had a change of heart and is seeking the post.
Cash will compete against former Minister of Labor Dion Foulkes for the post.
Laing who had not yet turned in his resignation to Senate President Sharon Wilson said he was expected to do so in short order.
by Cleopatra Murphy
Freeport News Reporter