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Christie’s PLP: One Blunder After Another

I just read on a political blog that urban renewal workers are now receiving financial assistance from social services because they have not been paid by the government.  I hope this rumor is untrue.

If it is true, then clearly heads must now roll.  The minister responsible for urban renewal is Deputy Prime Minister Philip Brave Davis.  The two co-chairpersons are former Free National Movement (FNM) Cabinet minister and MP Algernon Allen and former Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Deputy Prime Minister Cynthia ‘Mother’ Pratt.  Urban renewal is Christie’s brainchild.  The PLP government has allocated some $15 million towards the program.  Clearly a lot hinges on it.

So far it has failed to break the back of crime, especially murder and armed robbery.  Criminals are now being fired at by police officers in broad daylight on Bay Street.  Wait until the American Embassy hears of this latest shootout in Nassau.

I read on a Facebook political blog that vigilante criminals are now targeting the homes and cars of police officers.  Nassau is becoming more dangerous by the day.  If this urban renewal program fails to bring crime down to an acceptable level, one begins to wonder if the PLP has a back-up plan up its sleeve.

Anyway, urban renewal has been fraught with one controversy after another since it was re-implemented some eight months ago by this PLP government.  I cannot understand why such a simple program has had so many hiccups.  There was the alleged spat between Mother Pratt and the urban renewal assistant director in Grand Bahama and the ongoing controversy surrounding how the allocated $15 million is being spent.  And then there was the issue concerning urban renewal operatives bulldozing the homes of poor Nassuvians without the proper legal authorization.

Perhaps urban renewal’s greatest embarrassment has been the shoddy manner in which its employees, most of whom are PLPs, have been treated by the PLP government.  It was rumored last year that these workers were not paid one farthing in as many as five months because of some bureaucratic glitch in the government.  I understand that the pay issue was finally sorted out in either late November or early to mid-December.

Now I am hearing fresh rumors of the same debacle reoccurring in that program.  However, I simply refuse to believe that any government can be this incompetent with respect to not being able pay its workers on a timely basis.  If this rumor is true, then one must beg the question if someone in the Christie administration is intentionally making the prime minister look bad and hopelessly inept with these mindboggling and inexcusable blunders.  Maybe there is a covert and sinister plan by some anti-Christie elements within his own government to force him into early retirement.

Ever since May 7, there has been one blunder after another due to the poor advice Christie has been receiving from those he has surrounded himself with and from the utterly poor performance of several of his Cabinet ministers, MPs and government board chairpersons.  Christie needs to fire several of these underperforming ministers before they cause his government any further embarrassment.  With respect to urban renewal workers not being paid, if this rumor is true, Christie needs to clean house at the Ministry of Finance and he needs to relieve Davis of his duties at urban renewal.

With all due respect to the deputy prime minister, I don’t think that program is performing as well as it should under him.  The prime minister should let Davis focus solely on his Ministry of Works instead of also having to deal with urban renewal.

By:  Kevin Evans
Nassau, Bahamas
February, 2013

Posted in Opinions

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