After celebrating 48 years of majority rule, and 42 years as an independent nation the Bahamian masses are wandering aimlessly with no knowledge or concern of the nationâ s history.
There is a perception by some that the battle in 1967 was between the PLP and FNM; but in 1967 there were no FNM: that battle was between the PLP and UBP; with the NDP in full participation.
Until 1970 the people who would become founders of the FNM were serving members in the PLP; but we are a people that draws a conclusion then rise up to defend that position. It is written in scriptures that a nation that rises against itself shall not stand: it is also written, â I will vex the wise and make them foolish, and I will take a foolish people, and vexed the wise with a nation of fools.
What was the message the writers were trying to convey? Did they write about such a people that may come in the future? Or those writings were about a people from a distant past? Nowhere are those scriptures more relevant than in this nation of ours because we are a people that strives in tearing each other down. In 1953 the foundation on which majority rule would be built was laid; but in 1967 only half of the people were ready, so it would take the support of two independent members to usher in majority rule.
However, early into the new administration, Uriah McPhee a member of the governing party become ill and dies, but instead of calling a bye election; a general election was called. In that general election of April 10, 1968 the Progressive Liberal Party won in a landslide victory; but soon the ship of state would become top heavy and begin to roll.
By 1970 the captain became somewhat uneasy with certain crew members and sent out a warning saying â If you canâ t fish, cut bait; and if you canâ t cut bait, get the hell out of the boat!
That was some strong words; and the most insulting a captain could use towards his crew members, particularly those who had just helped him weather two terrible storms. These were not just ordinary fisherman; they were skilled navigators who knew the waters; no doubt the captain sensed their ambition and feared a mutiny.
Would he make such a pronouncement prior to the death of another crew member? The result would have been catastrophic because it would have been the end of majority rule.
The problem with our leaders particularly those at the top, they would try to hold on to power at all cost; even to the detriment of the nation. It must be remembered that no one lives forever, life is a journey that runs as a relay, so the baton must be passed on to the runner in waiting.In 1967 when the official count was in; the two major parties were locked in an 18 seat tie; but over the years that number continues to decline; first it was Uriah McPhee, then Clarence A Bain, and with the recent passing of Warren J. Levarity; that 18 is down to the Final Four.
Those distinguished four are Hon Arthur D Hanna, Sir. Arthur A. Foulkes, Dr. Elwood Donaldson and Hon. Maurice E. Moore: three out of that four were part of,â The Dissident Eight.â
~ Prince G. Smith