Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Leader Philip Brave Davis said last night that Attorney General Carl Bethel should be fired or made to resign over the “political persecution” of PLP members.
He was referring to the bribery trials of former PLP politicians Frank Smith and Shane Gibson, who were both acquitted.
Gibson, whose trial ended last week, was embraced by party supporters during an event at the party’s headquarters.
As he entered the room that was lined with blue and yellow, he was met with cheers from PLP supporters, as his former colleagues welcomed him.
In his speech,
Davis called for an inquiry into the government’s actions surrounding the two cases.
“The constitutional leader, the attorney general, has much to answer for to the Bahamian people as he has consistently breached the public trust and has defended the indefensible,” he said.
“In fact, he should be fired or made to resign.
“Carl Bethel must explain to the Bahamian people how we got to where we are – placing the government in a position to be sued in a court of law for malicious prosecution.
“And while he is at it, he has to explain to the Bahamian people how much these persecutions have cost the taxpayers with nothing to show for it.”
He added, “I publicly call for a formal inquiry into the circumstances and events touching and concerning the charges brought against Smith and Gibson with a view of bringing to justice any offending party in the process and to identify measures to prevent like future conduct.”
He warned Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis that “what goes around comes around”.
“I reminded the prime minister that where such abuses of power occur, the offending parties, be they police officers or politicians, need to understand that there will come a day of reckoning for them as well,” he said.
“What goes around comes around.
“When you set out to dig a grave for your enemy, dig two.”
Gibson, however, expressed only gratitude.
He thanked his wife, supporters and the party leadership in a heartfelt speech, citing Davis as the mastermind behind his defense.
“The last time I felt this excited was before the 2012 elections,” he said.
He added, “When I look at the leadership up here tonight, everyone must agree that the PLP is in great hands right now.
“…I already decided a long time ago that I’m done with politics, but listening to these speeches tonight, it’s tempting. But I’m not going to be tempted.”
Gibson said that while he has much he wants to say about the trial, he wouldn’t be “going down that road tonight”. He said his focus will be on supporting the party.
“My time right now is committed to working with the Progressive Liberal Party every single day in whatever capacity the leader sees fit to make sure that we become the next government of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.”