Minnis administration to make Grand Bahama grand again
As a Grand Bahamian, I am super-elated about the prospective ITM/Royal Caribbean deal for Freeport City that has been rumored to have been discussed by the Minnis Cabinet while on Grand Bahama. This mega-proposal has the potential of ending Grand Bahama’s decades old recession, putting thousands of Grand Bahamians back to work and thereby restoring their dignity.
Many of those who fled the island as economic refugees would return home. The Royal Caribbean proposal would revitalize the tourism industry in Freeport, much the same way Sol Kerzner single-handedly revitalized the tourism sector in Paradise Island and on New Providence.
This proposal, if it comes to fruition, coupled with the $100 million Carnival Cruise Line Grand Port project for Freeport, and the proposed $2.8 billion Ginn project slated for West Grand Bahama, all have the potential of spurring the kind of economic growth unseen since the days of Wallace Groves during the 1950s and 1960s. And I have not even factored in the proposed $5.5 billion Oban Energies deal for East Grand Bahama.
If the Free National Movement (FNM) government of Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis can get most, if not all of these projects up and running, a surplus of thousands of jobs would be created in Freeport. There wouldn’t be sufficient workers on the island, which is a good problem to have in Freeport, all things considered.
I have been critical of the Minnis administration in the past. But I am seeing an administration that is genuinely concerned and interested in bringing the grand back to Grand Bahama. Minnis and the FNM are a godsend. If these deals materialize, the FNM will win all five seats in the island in 2022. The main issue in Freeport is the lack of jobs and its attendant rise in poverty. If Minnis fixes Grand Bahama, it would be useless for any other political party to field candidates on that island in 2022.
I would also like to commend the Grand Bahama Port Authority and its executive team for working with the Minnis administration in helping to save Freeport. I am just happy and thankful to God almighty for finally answering the prayers of His beleaguered saints in Freeport. We are finally seeing a silver lining at the end of a dark tunnel which has spanned two decades.
– Kevin Evans