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Grant resigns as Leader of Opposition Business in HOA

by: Barbara Walkin, FN Night Editor - Published Thursday, August 4, 2016

A visibly emotional, shaky voiced Neko C. Grant, yesterday, resigned as Leader of the Opposition Business and Free National Movement (FNM) Shadow Minister of Works in the House of Assembly, citing Dr. Hubert Minnis’ dissatisfaction with his performance.

 

Grant said, the resignation was to take immediate effect.

 

“Recent events have demonstrated that my leader was uncomfortable with me or dissatisfied with my performance,” Grant said. “I would therefore do what honorable men would do in these circumstances.

 

“And so today I wish to advise this House, that I Neko Carlson Grant I, Member of Parliament for Central Grand Bahama and a Member of this place for 24 years, effective today, I will no longer serve as Leader of Opposition Business in this place or the Shadow Minister for Works.

 

“May God bless the FNM, may God continue to bless The Bahamas.”

 

While Grants’ resignation may have come as a surprise to some, it was apparent that his FNM colleagues were expecting the announcement, Wednesday (August 3) morning.

 

Speaking to his HOA colleagues, Grant recalled the wonderful working relationship shared with the Speaker of the House, Dr. Kendal Major, over the past four years.

 

“The mutual respect (we shared) that was viewed by the public was for the betterment of this place. The respect that your chair and your office demand and my high regard for you will remain.

 

“It is my wish that God would strengthen, guide and protect as you continue in this place,” said Grant.

 

Directing comments to Dr. Bernard Nottage, “the Member for Bain and Grants Town, Leader of the Government Business, I sincerely hope that the excellent working relationship that you and I enjoyed, would have contributed to the smooth running of this place and for the betterment of the Bahamian people we were elected to serve.

 

“I sincerely hope that God will continue to bless, guide and direct you as you lead Government’s business in this House, for the betterment of the Bahamian people.”

 

Grant was among six MPs, earlier this year, which signed a letter expressing “no confidence” in Leader of the FNM, Dr. Hubert Minnis.

 

Their agitation forced the early convention in late July; however, the convention was scheduled to be held in November this year. Meanwhile, amid concerns among some FNMs that the party would not be able to unite coming out of the convention, Grant in his convention presentation said, “It is time to get our party in order. The Bahamian people matter.”

 

He suggested that the FNM must fight as a united force.

 

“We shall fight on the battlefield, on the landing ground, in the fields, streets and the hills,” Grant said.

 

“And most importantly, when they (Progressive Liberal Party) come up against us we must stand, we will stand on our feet to the end, and we will come out on top. It is going to be a fight to the finish … us against them.

 

“FNMs, let us make history once again so that generations to come can look back and say we stood our course, we united our troops, we were victorious.”

 

Sharing on his record as Minister of Works, Grant said that between 2008 and 2012, he was “honored to lead the most comprehensive and ambitious infrastructure campaign in the history of the country.”

 

Among other projects, he pointed to the New Providence Road Improvement Program.

 

“The records will show that 80 percent of the workers were Bahamians. I was villainized for this project but look at the finished product,” he said.

 

“Road users are able to traverse the streets of New Providence with ease, the quality of life for Bahamians in particular has been improved because of this project.”

 

As minister, Grant came under heavy fire during the project, which the PLP claimed went $100 million over budget.

 

The project was plagued by numerous delays, and some business people said it resulted in their businesses being shut down.

 

Published  Thursday, August 4, 2016

 

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