In a letter to Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis yesterday, Liberty Latin America CEO Balan Nair apologized to the prime minister and The Bahamas, for the remarks he made in a now viral video and for “the unintended consequences” as a result of those comments.
“The message I was trying to convey did not come across appropriately, have hurt many feelings and for that I am sorry,” Nair said.
“I meant no disrespect to the prime minister, his office, or the citizens of The Bahamas.
“I look forward to putting this incident behind us and building a better BTC for its employees and for The Bahamas.”
Nair was captured on videos, which have been circulated on social media, joking about the performance of the Bahamas-based subsidiary and a recent meeting he had with Minnis.
“It’s so funny. I’ll tell you a story,” Nair said as he addressed a crowd of Liberty’s Jamaican employees.
“Garry and I and a few others were meeting with the prime minister of The Bahamas on Monday, and you can see him standing there, his crown jewel BTC is ran by a Jamaican, who’s sitting right across from him. He brought up more than once, ‘We need more Bahamians’, and he’s not trying to make eye contact with Garry.”
The story was met with light laughter from the crowd.
Minnis informed Parliament yesterday that he had a “very cordial” meeting with the executives of BTC and Liberty last week, where he was very firm that the government would not tolerate Bahamians losing jobs.
He said following the circulation of the videos, he has since spoken to Nair and advised him that it would “be fair and wise” to send an official letter of apology to the Office of the Prime Minister and to the Bahamian people.
In his letter, Nair thanked the prime minister for meeting with him and his colleagues, adding that, “It was a pleasure to meet with you again and to constructively discuss many topics that impact our respective business, Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC).
“I emphasize that we are excited about the business prospects for BTC and are committed to the company.”
He continued, “As we discussed, we are also looking to invest in improving our networks across the region and we will certainly look at The Bahamas as one of those markets to enhance and extend our network. We believe in our employees, The Bahamas, and we know there is a bright future ahead.
“I appreciate the relationship we have developed and our collaboration with the board of directors of BTC has been constructive as we work together on recent initiatives.
“My sincere hope is that we can continue to work together in a meaningful way to ensure that BTC can reach its potential and meaningfully contribute to The Bahamas.”
Education: Vrije Universiteit Brussel (University of Brussels), MA in Mass Communications