SHIFTING SIDES: Butler-Turner takes up consultant role at SBDC

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Former Opposition leader for the Free National Movement Loretta Butler-Turner has been appointed as a consultant to the Small Business Development Centre (SBDC) — a move she said marks a shift in her political philosophy.

Butler-Turner who stepped away from frontline politics after an unsuccessful bid for the leadership of the Free National Movement prior to the 2017 general election.

While addressing the media at a weekly press briefing at the Office of the Prime Minister yesterday, she said that it was a privilege and an honour for her to have accepted the position on the invitation of Prime Minister Philip Davis.

Butler-Turner explained: “I have had four and a half to five years to look what the previous administration I have been a part of had done. I loved the PLP’s blueprint for a new day. I believe that if I can help to make that reality then yes there is definitely a shift.”

The former Long Island MP said that while she did not want to re-enter frontline politics she felt she could still make a difference in the country “by helping to build the lives of persons from an entrepreneurial standpoint”.

“Over the last four and a half to five years, my life has been truly devoted especially to young people in making them more self-sufficient in their dreams and expanding our economy. I was delighted to be invited to this particular position because I believe small and micro businesses and self-employment is truly what we need in The Bahamas when we talk about inclusion,” she said.

She continued: “I am so proud of the fact that people would say that most Prime Ministers would choose people who are party supporters and persons in their advisory. I am so glad that as a  Bahamas,  as a nationalist, the Prime Minister saw what I was doing, appreciated it saw that I can probably be a very good fit for the dreams of the PLP and new day government in expanding our economy and most importantly for entrepreneurship.”

Butler-Turner underscored her strong passion for women in entrepreneurship.

“One of my mandates is to ensure that women, in particular, are given the ability to build their own businesses,” she said.

“The majority of our households are run by women. So many workers have been displaced from their jobs, displaced from their homes by natural disaster Hurricane Dorian but have a lot of latent talent and ability to be creative and do things on their own. We have seen a plethora of growth in that regard and we want to be able to help direct that.”