Former non-resident ambassador to Panama C.A. Smith yesterday issued a public apology acknowledging his “unintended breach of protocol” after a video of him announcing that he will be the next governor general was released on social media.
“At a farewell luncheon with the foreign affairs staff in Freeport on Friday last, in strictest confidence, I shared with them my plans for the future and told them that I was being appointed to the office of governor general,” Smith explained in a statement.
“I wish to assure the Bahamian people that this was a private discussion that was never intended to be made public.
“I extend sincerest apologies to Governor General Her Excellency Dame Marguerite Pindling and to the Most Honorable Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis and the government for any embarrassment or inconvenience resulting from this unintended breach of protocol.”
In the video that was posted on social media, Smith notified the small group about his recent resignation as ambassador to Panama and five other countries, adding that he was to become governor general after Queen Elizabeth II appointed him.
“It is no secret that I tendered my resignation with effect from today to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and after midnight tonight, I’ll no longer be ambassador to six Central American countries,” Smith said.
“But the resignation was really more not of retirement but more of transition.
“As a result of Her Majesty the Queen appointing me to be the governor general, I found it necessary to have to resign from the position that I had to be transited to another position.”
He said the swearing in ceremony will take place on the last Friday of June in Nassau and informed those in attendance that all of them would be receiving invitations to attend.
Dame Marguerite Pindling, widow of former Prime Minister Sir Lynden Pindling, has served as governor general since July 2014.
In a statement on Sunday, Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Leader Philip Brave Davis blasted Smith, calling the video a “violation…of all protocols” and an insult to Dame Marguerite.
Davis added that he was not consulted or informed by Minnis about any changes regarding the governor general’s office.
The government has still not released any public commentary about Smith being appointed as governor general.
Neither has the Ministry of Foreign Affairs released any information about Smith resigning his ambassadorial appointments.