NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Minister of National Security Marvin Dames remained tight-lipped on why former Parliamentary Commissioner Philip Turner was transferred to the Ministry of Youth to become its undersecretary, saying: “That’s not on my radar.”
Eyewitness News revealed that Turner, who made recommendations for the government to make the voter’s register continuous ahead of the act being amended, was transferred to the Ministry of Youth on December 23, 2020.
When asked about the transfer, Dames said: “Listen, transfers occur every day in this country. I ain’ ga’ stand here and discuss one transfer.
“People get transferred every day.
“That’s not on my radar, right.
“Now, if you are suggesting that something is out of whack there, then let me hear it, but transfers are all a part of the business of leadership and running a department and running a country.”
Asked when the country can expect a new commissioner, Dames said: “As soon as one is identified. We’ll get back to you shortly on that.”
When pressed on whether the government was dissatisfied with Turner’s performance, Dames insisted it has “nothing to do with that”.
“I won’t comment on that any further,” he continued.
“I think it is improper and I think it is unfair.”
Turner, who was contacted for comment recently on the matter, indicated that he is a career civil servant and will go where he is needed.
In October 2020, Turner advised at a press conference that he had recommended the existing register be maintained, removing deceased and incarcerated individuals from it and transferring voters who changed their residences.
The move would only require new voters to register.
The register used in the last general election was set to expire in July 2021.
The government tabled the Parliamentary Election (Amendment) Bill, 2020, in early December.