While declaring that the Free National Movement (FNM) will be a “very, very vibrant, aggressive” opposition, former Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis pledged to hold the governing Progressive Liberal Party’s (PLP) feet to the fire.
“I will be going back into Parliament as the leader of the opposition with my parliamentary colleagues,” said Minnis, whose party won just seven of the 32 seats in the House of Assembly last week.
“We have had lots of experience both in opposition and in government and be assured that we will be a very, very vibrant, aggressive opposition and we will keep the government’s feet to the fire. They have made many promises and it’s essential that if you make promises, you adhere to the promises.
“Don’t immediately come out of the blocks saying you were going to decrease VAT (value-added tax) from 12 [percent] to 10 [percent] but you can’t do it anymore. When we spoke about the challenges we faced in terms of [Hurricane] Irma, in terms of [Hurricane] Dorian, in terms of COVID, they said that was no excuse.
“So we will accept no excuse. The Bahamian public was promised VAT to decrease to 10 percent and I’m sure they’re looking forward to it.”
Minnis said he and the other six FNMs who were elected to Parliament will sit down and analyze what the PLP is doing.
He said they will be “aggressive in making statements”.
Minnis, the now former prime minister, called an election eight months before it was constitutionally due.
On Wednesday night, FNM Chairman Carl Culmer announced that Minnis will stay on as leader of the party until a new leader is selected at the FNM’s convention in November.
He said Minnis will not offer himself as leader during the convention.
While the former prime minister has pledged that the opposition will be aggressive in Parliament, he is not expected to remain opposition leader after a new party leader is chosen.