Progressive Liberal Party Leader Philip Brave Davis said yesterday the PLP was not surprised by Centreville MP Reece Chipman’s decision to leave the Free National Movement (FNM).
Chipman submitted his resignation to FNM Chairman Carl Culmer yesterday morning and notified House Speaker Halson Moultrie that he will sit in Parliament as an independent.
In a statement, Davis said, “We have watched how a young professional Bahamian was deliberately misled, abused and frustrated by a leadership which disrespected him.”
He continued, “As leader of the opposition, I have watched his concerns. I thought that he was making genuine contributions to the common good of our Commonwealth and did not deserve the disrespect.”
Davis said the PLP hopes to “find synergies” with Chipman as the party “works for the development, peace and good order of The Bahamas”.
“I hope to have the benefit of his thoughtful counsel,” he said.
In a statement, the FNM said it was aware of Chipman’s resignation from the party.
“It is unfortunate that Mr. Chipman decided to leave our party,” the FNM said.
Chipman has been highly critical of the Minnis administration since it came to office.
Yesterday, he listed the government’s handling of Hurricane Dorian as one of the key reasons he decided to leave the party.
“It was a big thing for me,” Chipman said.
In a letter to Moultrie, the MP said he can do more for Centreville as an independent.
“There is a huge disconnect, in my opinion, between the Parliament and the people, and I am no longer able to sit back and let it happen,” he said.
“I am not prepared to sit back and watch a Parliament not follow the very laws they enact, but yet dream of a lawful society and a lawful culture.”
Chipman won Centreville by a mere four votes over former Prime Minister Perry Christie in 2017.