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Miller says PLP hasn’t guaranteed him nomination

Golden Isles MP Vaughn Miller said yesterday the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) has not guaranteed him a nomination.

Miller, who was elected on the Free National Movement’s (FNM) ticket and left the party last December, announced in the House of Assembly on Wednesday that he has joined the PLP.

Asked yesterday whether he would run as an independent if the party decides in the end not to nominate him, he said he would not.

“We’ll sit. We’ll talk. We will resolve it at some point or another. I’m in this for the long haul,” Miller said.

“I love where I am. I love what I’m doing because for me it’s about people. And so, while the political angle of it is important, it’s about people, it’s about The Bahamas.”

Miller said he was in the political wilderness after Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis fired him from his position as parliamentary secretary in the Ministry of Social Services and Urban Development in 2018.

“The leadership in the FNM since I was fired has never spoken to me,” he told The Nassau Guardian.

“There’s never been reconciliation in terms of wanting for us to talk and discuss whatever challenges there were and resolve them.

“Matter of fact, persons in the organization told me what would be best for me because they were a part of meetings and conversations. I did not have a future in the FNM, so I knew at some point I had to move on. It was just a matter of which political party I would be affiliated with, and obviously I chose to be affiliated with the PLP.”

Minnis fired Miller after he voted against the increase in value-added tax from 7.5 percent to 12 percent.

He became an independent member of Parliament in December 2019 after he left the FNM.

Miller said the PLP was the best decision for him.

“…The Progressive Liberal Party, in terms of social change in The Bahamas, has been the organization for that,” he said.

“…It’s a matter of talking to the leadership and finding out where they were and in terms of the history of the organization and what the organization has been about and where they are in relation to that. I was very satisfied with those conversations. I determined this would be the best place for me.”

Miller also said that even though he spoke with constituents about his move, the decision was already clear.

“There are some constituents I spoke with,” he said.

“As an independent member of Parliament, you’re on your own, as a matter of fact. There are persons I surrounded myself with who I definitely spoke to and they were in tune all the way. There were some constituents who I spoke with, but it wasn’t like I had to speak with persons to come to this conclusion.”

He said he is confident that he will win the seat.

“I think what we need to understand in New Providence, in particular, is that the PLP has a base and the FNM has a base, but the growing constituency of voters who I call independent, I call them swing voters,” he said. 

“They do not have loyalty to either party and you’ll find that a lot of the voters will not be of the same ilk. They will ask questions, they will make demands of their members of Parliament, and so it’s going to take more than coming under a party banner or color. That’s a part of it and it appeals to its base, but the independent voters, the swing voters, those are the voters that made a difference in the last election.”

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