PLP likely to postpone natl. convention

PLP likely to postpone natl. convention
PLP Chairman, Senator Fred Mitchell

Candidates selection process proceeding

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman Fred Mitchell said while a definitive decision has yet to be made about the party’s national convention, it is likely the event will be postponed and an announcement will soon have to be made.

“Several of our Family Island visits have had to be put off because these rules (emergency orders) have now changed without notice,” Mitchell told Eyewitness News.

“For example, we planned a constituency conference in MICAL and that now has to move. That was supposed to be [in the] first or second week in August.

“So, that’s now changed. We have to see — a lot of things — where this is going in terms of the ability to meet in a public space. All of that has now been challenged and confined, so until we actually get to that point, we can say anything definitive.

“Under the present rules it looks as if we won’t be able to meet in large gatherings, and so that means a decision will have to be taken to postpone it until such time as that can happen.”

Asked when a decision will have to be made, Mitchell said planning and ramping up a convention, is a “huge undertaking, so we’re pretty close to that deadline now and so the leader will probably bring it to the leadership council as soon as the council can meet to determine what to do.”

The PLP had a voting national convention on July 25-26, 2019.

Ahead of the convention, PLP Leader Philip Brave Davis announced the time had come for whoever wished to run, to do so, after previously discouraging a leadership contest.

Davis and PLP Deputy Leader Chester Cooper remained at the helm of the party.

Both incumbents were unopposed during the nomination exercise.

Mitchell retained the chairmanship post, besting former Tourism Minister Obie Wilchcombe.

Wilchcombe unsuccessful ran for PLP deputy leader during the party’s 2009 convention and for chairman during the party’s 2017 convention.

When contacted, Free National Movement Chairman Carl Culmer said he was not in a position to speak about the convention as the FNM’s council still had to meet to discuss the matter.

PLP candidates

Meanwhile, Mitchell said the PLP continues to advance its candidates selection process.

He described the process as “interesting”, noting there have been some suggestions the process has been “fractious” as people vie for various constituencies.

“Everybody should just be calm,” the PLP chairman said.

“It’s good to have the competition

“They get to see how people act. How people will act as public figures, whether they are trustworthy; whether they know the party rules; whether they are actually true PLPs; whether they stand up for the country — and all of that takes a bit of jostling back and forth. People should get used to the fact that you’re going to have this kind of public jostling and not to get exercised about it. We just ask people to be respectful.”

Mitchell said he hopes the branches will be in a position to recommend candidates by October.