Minnis: PM embarrassed himself in House
Former Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis said yesterday that Prime Minister Philip Davis “embarrassed” himself when he falsely accused The Nassau Guardian of making up a report that the government’s deficit was up in the first six months of the fiscal year.
After East Grand Bahama MP Kwasi Thompson pointed out to the prime minister that the data on the deficit was contained in his Mid-Year Budget statement that he delivered in Parliament the week before, the prime minister pivoted and said it was a “misspeak by the [speech] writers”.
A week later, Davis apologized to The Nassau Guardian in Parliament and admitted that he got it wrong.
“The prime minister was publicly embarrassed,” said Minnis in the House yesterday during debate on the Public Finance Management Bill, 2023 and the Public Procurement Bill, 2023.
“He was forced to apologize to the newspaper.
“What is scarier is that the minister of finance did not know if the deficit was up or down.
“He was out of the loop about such a critical and important matter.
“Imagine if he had said this in an international setting on the world stage during one of his many, many trips.
“He would have absolutely embarrassed himself and The Bahamas.
“Let us not forget how he seemed out of touch, out of his depth and out of the loop on the BPL (Bahamas Power and Light) hedge.
“The Ministry of Finance really is too big for him.”
Minnis said the issue is not the writer, but the minister.
“He is not familiar with the numbers,” Minnis said.
“He reads speeches with information he apparently does not understand.
“What else is the prime minister getting wrong?
“What else is he absolutely confused about?
“What else doesn’t he know?
“If the minister of finance were familiar with the figures, if a mistake were made, he would have been able to see it and correct it.
“This issue raises serious questions about the prime minister in his role as minister of finance.
“It raises serious questions about the credibility of what he says publicly and in the House.”