Security heightened as PM receives verbal death threats

Security heightened as PM receives verbal death threats

PM to continue with normal duties

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Two anonymous callers, believed to be men, phoned into the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) and made death threats against Prime Minister Philip Davis shortly after noon today.

At a press briefing minutes ago, Commissioner of Police Clayton Fernander said Davis was not “scared” but officials are taking the threats seriously and have heightened security measures to ensure his safety and also OPM staff.

The threats follow the circulation of a video purportedly taken from within the crowd at the immigration protest staged by the Coalition of Independents last week Wednesday, in which a man is heard suggesting that Davis should be assassinated.

Fernander said it was too early to rule out whether the calls were linked to the group.

“Acts like that will only take the temperature to another level and you saw that played out today,” Fernander said.

“Shortly after noon two anonymous calls believed to be male, called in and made death threats to the prime minister. Officers are responding and we now have a full-scale investigation that is ongoing at this time. We are following significant leads, both calls came in one right after the other 15 minutes apart threatening to kill the nation’s leader. We as Bahamians, it shouldn’t happen. When you are talking about threatening the nation’s leader… we take this very serious.”

In a statement, the Office of the Prime Minister said the current assessment by Davis’s security team was that he should continue with his normal duties.

At the press briefing, Fernander warned the callers to stop now as they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

The country will host the 44th Regular Meeting of CARICOM Heads of Government on February 15-16.

Fernander noted that heightened security measures were already planned for that conference, but there will likely be further measures taken after a full assessment.

“It’s a big concern,” Fernander said.

“You saw it play out in Haiti where the president was assassinated. We Bahamians are like copycats, God forbid but we need now to stop it.”

He added: “We will view what is there, and look at laws and we will throw the book at them.”

About Ava Turnquest

Ava Turnquest is the head of the Digital Department at Eyewitness News. Her most notable beat coverage spans but is not limited to politics, immigration and human rights, with a focus especially on minority groups. In 2018, she was nominated by the Bahamas Press Club for “The Eric Wilmott Award for Investigative Journalism”. Ava is deeply motivated by her passion about the role of fourth estate, and uses her pen to inform, educate and sensitize the public.