NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Health minister Dr. Duane Sands on Tuesday defended his decision to invite Picewell Forbes, a Progressive Liberal Party member of parliament, to travel with him to Andros to tour health facilities on that island.
The trip made headlines in a local daily on Tuesday and the article allowed Forbes, the MP for South Andros, to defend why he travelled alongside the health minister to his constituency.
The trip raised eyebrows considering that the opposition party has been calling for the resignation of Dr. Sands after a magistrate gave him a scathing review for his reported involvement in the Frank Smith bribery and extortion trial.
Dr. Sands told media Tuesday that he is not interested in a political game and is simply concerned with handling the affairs of the office that he has been appointed to.
“I think that we needed to go down to look firsthand at the state of the healthcare facilities in South Andros and Mangrove Cay. I would have made it very clear to the member of parliament that we would be travelling and he agreed to come down,” Dr. Sands said.
“This has nothing to do with politics and the PLP, but it has everything to do with the ministry of health.
“As far as I concerned, politics have always been aside. This has been about taking care of the job that I have been asked to perform on behalf of Bahamians. If people want to score political brownie points then so be it.”
Forbes’ interview in the local daily, printed on Tuesday, asserted that political arguments have nothing to do with the business of representing his constituents.
He noted that all other political matters will be addressed in parliament.
The PLP staged a boycott of parliamentary proceedings for two sittings. They are expected to return to the Lower Chamber today.