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|Forty Years In The Bahamian Desert (10 January 2007)|
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|Page 1 of 1||Total of 4 messages|
|Posted by:||Jan 10th 2007, 05:36:09 pm|
|Kimberly||On the same subject of majority rule, I thought that this article at Bahama Pundit was pretty interesting, too:
The March to Majority Rule in The Bahamas
by Sir Arthur Foulkes
...So how did January 10 1967 come about? Who contributed? And what does majority rule really mean? Any answers to these questions in this space must necessarily be brief and therefore run the risk of being inadequate.
Everybody knows that the results of the 1967 election were close. The PLP returned the following 18 members (in alphabetical order except for the Leader) to a 38-member House of Assembly:
Lynden Pindling, Preston Albury, Clarence Bain, Milo Butler, Clifford Darling, Elwood Donaldson, Arthur Foulkes, Carlton Francis, Arthur Hanna, Warren Levarity, Curtis MacMillan, Uriah McPhee, Maurice Moore, Edmund Moxey, Jimmy Shepherd, George Thompson, Jeffrey Thompson and Cecil Wallace Whitfield.
There were other progressive candidates who offered in that historic confrontation but who were not elected. They, too, contributed. Among them were Loftus Roker, Livingston Coakley and Anthony Roberts.
George Thompson, who was elected to one of the Eleuthera seats played a crucial part in achieving the 18 count for the PLP. Mr. Thompson, a black man, was a former UBP who had fallen out with his party.
He was extremely popular in Eleuthera and delivered two seats – his and Preston Albury’s -- to the PLP. Without him, the PLP would have lost. The party could not have found another candidate who could defeat the UBP in Eleuthera.
The role of Randol Fawkes is well known but sometimes not as well understood. Sir Randol had been elected as senior member (with Sir Lynden as his junior) in the Southern District in 1956. In that election he ran on the PLP ticket but later became disaffected.
He ran as Labour in 1962 and 1967. In his inimitable fashion Sir Randol sought to take single-handed credit for majority rule in 1967. But he had indeed contributed mightily to the progressive movement as the country’s premier labour leader.
It was inconceivable that he could have sided with the UBP. He was solidly entrenched in the movement and ran with the support of the PLP. If the PLP had opposed him he would no doubt have been defeated.
Alvin Braynen did have a choice. He was identified with the Old Guard but was feuding with them at the time and so ran as an independent candidate in 1967.
It is doubtful that Sir Alvin was motivated by any strong belief in what the progressives had been advocating. More likely he was motivated by revenge or personal ambition. He threw in his lot with the PLP and accepted the post of Speaker of the House. He could just as easily, and with no loss of credibility, aligned himself with the UBP.
Another little known factor in the PLP’s performance was that Sir Lynden had to be persuaded to run in the Kemp’s Bay (South Andros) Constituency against the popular Cyril Stevenson.
Mr. Stevenson, a founding member of the PLP, left the party in 1965 over the mace incident and the party’s boycott of parliament. He did not join Paul Adderley’s NDP but ran as an independent.
Sir Lynden was reluctant to leave his safe seat in New Providence but his NCPA friends, supported by Lady Pindling, rightly judged that he was the only PLP candidate who could defeat Mr. Stevenson.
He was assured that in the event of his defeat one of his friends would have resigned so he could be elected in New Providence and remain leader of the party. Sir Lynden won and continued to represent Kemp’s Bay until he left the House in 1997.
There were others who were not elected to parliament in 1967 but who nevertheless made great contributions in the march towards that day. Among them were C. R. Walker and Bert Cambridge.
Perhaps most notable was Etienne Dupuch who struck a major blow against the racism of the old guard with his 1956 anti-discrimination resolution.
[KKB. To wit:]
Sir Etienne attempted unsuccessfully to create what he called a more moderate alternative to both the UBP and the PLP. He frequently expressed the opinion that the PLP was not ready to govern and he had a serious problem with the credibility of Sir Lynden.
Nevertheless, for years Sir Etienne excoriated the old guard both from the floor of parliament and in the columns of his newspaper. He condemned their arrogance and relentlessly exposed their corrupt dealings.
Once he wrote a series of 30 articles exposing the shenanigans of just one prominent member of the old guard. He lamented the fact that while there were some good people among the Bay Street Boys, their leaders were hopelessly arrogant and intransigent.
It was Sir Etienne’s unrelenting campaign against that corruption, arrogance and intransigence and for reform which opened the eyes of thousands of Bahamians. The PLP was the chief beneficiary of this.
|Posted by:||Jan 10th 2007, 04:50:56 am|
|kristi||WOW - I wish you the courage to carry on in your strong hope for an eventual change in government thinking and maybe your article will convince others to follow in your footsteps. Peace|
|Posted by:||Jan 9th 2007, 05:25:22 pm|
|100%pure ash||PLEASE get out of the desert & PLEASE take the blindfold off!!!|
|Posted by:||Jan 9th 2007, 12:06:14 pm|
|Fig Tree News Team||From this week's My Bahamian Blog:
On January 10, 2007, it will be the fortieth year of Majority Rule. This is a polite euphemism for us blacks holding the reins of power and governing ourselves. The trouble with this is that I am a Majority Bahamian, and it is them blacks that hold the reins of power while us blacks face crime, unemployment and non-empowerment.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get a decent standard of education from my government. The national grade average is D+.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get a tertiary education at home. I must leave these shores to better myself. The College of the Bahamas is a hotbed of in-fighting, political patronage and mediocre performance.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get justice in the Bahamian courts without appealing to the Privy Council in the United Kingdom in spite of the fact that my government pays $9 million to a Caribbean court that it doesn't trust.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get a fair shake in business from the government. I must stand behind in the queue for years while non-Majority foreigners with shaky finances and loose morals get waived to the front of the line to be given my children's patrimony.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get redress when cabinet ministers and government officials are corrupt.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get many of my fellow citizens to believe or recognise or accept that our first black Prime Minister, the father of our country, Lynden Pindling was a criminal and we, us the children are still paying for his sins of the sins of the father when he sold out the country.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot escape the danger that my life is in on the streets on a daily basis, either from crime, rape, murder or traffic.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot have a progressive Prime Minister who understands the democratic principle and the reasons for separation of Church and State.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get the straight goods from the governing politicians without lies, or subterfuge. Truth is an unfaceable prospect for them.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot make corrupt politicians pay for their crimes against my fellow Bahamians.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get my government to sanction my sexual choices and grant societal equality and non-discrimination, in spite of the fact that there are secret homosexuals in the government.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian have no decent heros as role models both in their public and private lives. Ruling Bahamians canonised their despots in a pathetic attempt at self-validation.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get politicians to believe that they are servants of the people and not holding an office for the chance to get rich through graft.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot dispel the cynicism of those in power who say one thing and do another.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot find a moral politician who does not cheat on his wife, does not accept gifts for influence and who acts in the best interests of his/her constituents.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot find a leader who is not satisfied with the status quo, and who dares to dream, and who does!
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian can hardly find a minister of the cloth who is a Christian, or who practices the higher precepts of altruism and spirituality, and not indulge in the base sins of sexual interference, greed and materialistic endeavours.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot get true empowerment from my government because of their self-dealing ways.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian am not one of God's chosen people. God's chosen people were given the promised land after wandering in the desert for 40 years. I fear that my God has forsaken, me and my countrymen, and until we stand up and demand and get righteousness, we will never attain the promised land.
It has been forty years, and I a Majority Bahamian cannot celebrate the cynical self-serving that will happen on January 10th, because it will be those men with baseness on their minds, and vileness in their hearts who falsely proclaim, that I, a Majority Bahamian, will celebrate their perfidity for forty years.
It has been forty years, and I am a Majority Bahamian. May God have mercy on me and my country.
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