Mitchell: Govt. is “tone deaf”

Mitchell: Govt. is “tone deaf”
Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman, Senator Fred Mitchell. (FILE PHOTO)

Many Bahamians are unhappy and suffering, says Mitchell


NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Since coming to office in May 2017, the government has largely made the Bahamas an “unhappy country”, so much so that it has become “tone deaf” to the cries of the Bahamian people, said Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman Senator Fred Mitchell on Tuesday.

“People are unhappy, they are disgruntled, and they don’t quite know why they are unhappy or disgruntled,” Mitchell said.

“They thought that attacking and turning on the PLP might have been the answer for it, but as it turns out, they elected a set of pied pipers who were taking them over the cliff and having discovered that there is this palpable anger on the streets.”

Mitchell was addressing the media yesterday at the PLP headquarters.  His press conference was to mainly respond to recent claims made by Finance Minister K. Peter Turnquest about the state of the economy when the government took office in May 2007, but he also addressed current issues facing the country.

Mitchell told media that what he found so confounding was how a party that said it was ‘the peoples time’ just 18 months ago, are so “tone deaf” that they cannot see or understand that Bahamians are actually “suffering”.

The PLP chairman said the number of persons seeking a handout or some sort of assistance is overwhelming, especially for a person who is a businessman or a public figure.

“They can tell you that it is simply overwhelming and as Christmas gets closer, it appears to be getting worse so the unions reflect dissatisfaction with the level of competence and leadership which we now have in our country, and that is why we are where we are today,” Mitchell said.

The PLP chairman also mentioned at yesterday’s press conference that since coming to office in May 2017, the government has not given any indication of how they plan to grow the economy.

“We have seen nothing that this government has done since it has come to office to deal with growth,” Mitchell claimed.

“All they talk about is cutting back, fire, dismiss, cancel, review, anything not to get growth. That is the issue,” Mitchell said.

Earlier this week, Turnquest revealed that the government met hundreds of millions of dollars in unpaid bills when it came to office in May 2017, and the full tally of these bills and obligations was now well past $700 million. His comments came in response to the criticisms made by Opposition Deputy Leader Chester Cooper, who had dissected and made comments about the government’s Fiscal Strategy Report.

But Mitchell said on Tuesday that instead of attacking Cooper, the Finance Minister should be making attempts to attract investment to the country.

“The FNM spent all their time fighting against Baha Mar and yet today, it is the only thing that they have to boast about as it relates to a positive in the economy. We need more room inventory if tourism is to grow. We need more investment and what they ought to be doing instead of attacking Chester Cooper, is spending time beating the bushes to get investment in this country. That is what they ought to be doing,” Mitchell said.