Pineridge MP Frederick McAlpine said yesterday while he’s still a member of the Free National Movement (FNM), he expected more from the Minnis administration.
“People expected more than we have gotten and so I expected more of the administration,” McAlpine said in an interview with The Nassau Guardian.
“Based on the persons that make up the administration, we thought, and I think The Bahamas in general thought, that perhaps we would have done better than we have been doing thus far.”
Despite his dissatisfaction, he said, “McAlpine is still an FNM… The reality is, I’ve spoken out to issues and every issue that I’ve spoken out to has also been a concern of the people of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.
“Am I supposed to just see certain things and hear certain things, and if I disagree with my party or my party is wrong — or it is something that my party campaigned about and I address it, what makes me anti the party?
“Am I just supposed to go along to get along?
“Am I just supposed to say ‘yes sir’ to everything?
“If they tell me the sky is pink and everybody and their mama know it’s not, am I still supposed to say the sky is pink?
“Come on, that’s not fair.
“This is about people.”
McAlpine has emerged a deeply controversial figure over the last year or so.
Last June, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis fired him from his position as chairman of the hotel corporation after he voted against the government’s plan to increase value-added tax (VAT) from 7.5 percent to 12 percent.
Minnis also fired Bains and Grants Town MP Travis Robinson and Golden Isles MP Vaughn Miller as parliamentary secretaries for the same reason.
The three, along with Centreville MP Reece Chipman, also voted against a resolution for the government to rent Town Centre Mall to relocate the main post office. The mall is owned by Minister of Immigration Brent Symonette and his brother.
McAlpine recently criticized Minnis for failing to address criticisms against National Security Minister Marvin Dames and Health Minister Dr. Duane Sands made by a magistrate in the corruption case of former Progressive Liberal Party Senator Frank Smith.
Last week, McAlpine was back in the news after he was blasted by Dames after the House of Assembly suspended. The incident happened when McAlpine approached the minister.
The Pineridge MP said his criticisms of the Minnis administration have nothing to do with wanting to be a Cabinet minister.
“People said I’m upset because I didn’t get a Cabinet position,” McAlpine said.
“I don’t know if it’s the best time to be in a Minnis-led Cabinet; that’s, number one, based on the performances thus far.”
“Number two, this has nothing to do with a Cabinet.
“Am I acting like somebody trying to get in the Cabinet?”
He asserted that when he speaks out, it is not for the spotlight, but for the good of the people.