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Prime Minister Anticipates “Excellent Year” for Grand Bahama



#Bahamas, February 12, 2018 – Grand Bahama – “I believe that this year will be a good and excellent year for Grand Bahama.”

RIBBON CUTTINGThe Prime Minister’s sentiments came during the official opening of Pirate’s Cove Zipline & Water Park, located at Taino Beach, on Saturday afternoon.  Prime Minister, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis gave the keynote address, following a list of other speakers at the event, including Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. K. Peter Turnquest, and Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Travis Robinson.

Although various aspects of the Pirate’s Cove adventure theme park had been opened and operational for some time, Saturday’s opening was for the introduction of the Zipline Adventure, the first of its kind in The Bahamas.

Prime Minister Minnis noted that one of the unique aspects of the Pirate’s Cove Zipline & Water Park was the fact that it was carried out by Bahamians. This, he said, proves that Bahamians are more than capable of owning their economy.


“My government seeks to encourage more of these Bahamian business ventures, particularly in Grand Bahama,” added the Prime Minister.  “It’s important to note that this is an achievement for the entire island of Grand Bahama.  It strongly suggests that investment confidence is improving.

“I have been advised that the investment into this project totals some $1.4 million into the economy of Grand Bahama.  I am pleased that Pirate’s Cove presently employs 30 persons directly, and they are all Bahamians.  They also have an additional 30 persons who are indirectly employed by this entity.”

The Prime Minister noted that the results of the recent labor force survey by the Department of Statistics for Grand Bahama indicates some progress.  He said that in Grand Bahama, there was a slight decrease in the unemployment rate from 12.4 percent to 12.1 percent.

“There are still too many unemployed, but the rate is trending in the right direction,” said Prime Minister Minnis.

“It should be noted that there was a significant increase in employed persons in Grand Bahama. The number of persons employed in May 2017 in Grand Bahama was 26,160 and that number increased to 27,240 in November 2017.  “We still need more jobs.”

Prime Minister Minnis reiterated his commitment to the Second City, noting that Grand Bahama has been a major focus of his government, and he vowed that they will continue to work towards its complete restoration.  The Prime Minister said he would continue to have a personal interest in Grand Bahama to ensure that the economy of the island is revived.  He said he also has the same passion for the other islands, as well as the inner city of New Providence.


Referring to his most recent National Address, Prime Minister Minnis affirmed his announcement of all first time businesses being exempt from business license fees. He also affirmed that all businesses with a gross of less than 100,000 dollars are exempt from business license fees.

“I have been travelling to Grand Bahama for a very long time and I know that the Port loves Grand Bahamians just as much,” said Minister Minnis, jokingly taking a jab at GBPA president, Ian Rolle, who was also at Saturday’s opening.

MRS. MINNIS TRIES THE ZIPLINE“Therefore I am certain that the Port will match the Government.  Just as I said to the Minister of Finance recently, I will say to the Port… ‘don’t make me out to be a liar.’”

The Prime Minister said that the Zipline Park was something great for Grand Bahama and he wished it total success.  He reminded his audience of the Government’s ongoing transactions to get the Grand Lucayan hotel sold and re-opened.  He also spoke of the Government’s negotiation with Bahamas Paradise for the return of the Grand Celebration and the introduction of a new vessel, which will bring additional stopover visitors and new opportunities for Grand Bahama in April.

“We have also negotiated an airlift agreement with Sunwing and now have the return of Vacation Express,” added Prime Minister Minnis.  “It has been announced that a total of eight non-stop flights departing from various U.S. cities will begin their flight schedules to Grand Bahama this year.

By: Andrew Coakley

 Photo Captions: 

Header: Prime Minister of The Bahamas, Dr. the Hon. Hubert Minnis (second left) was keynote speaker at the official opening of Pirate’s Cove Zipline & Water Park at Taino Beach in Grand Bahama on Saturday, February 3, 2018.  Also on hand for the event were Minister of State for Grand Bahama in the Office of the Prime Minister, Senator Kwasi Thompson (second right); Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Works, Iram Lewis (right); and Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism, Travis Robinson.

First insert: It was a long way up to the spot where two ribbons were waiting to be cut by the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister to officially open Pirate’s Cove Zipline & Water Park at Taino Beach on Saturday, February 3, 2018.  Prime Minister Minnis was the keynote speaker at the event.

Second insert: Wife of the Prime Minister, Mrs. Patricia Minnis was one of the first brave persons to try out the Zipline at Pirate’s Cove Zipline & Water Park, during opening ceremonies on Saturday, February 3, 2018.  Mrs. Minnis successfully zipped on the 30-ft. line and she set the stage for others to try.   Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. Peter Turnquest followed, choosing to take the 50-ft. line, where he waved to the crowd as he zipped by.

BIS Photos/Lisa Davis









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Agreement inked between Bahamas and Dubai



#DUBAI, UAE, January 18, 2022 – A Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Public Service of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, Hon. Fred Mitchell and His Excellency Sheikh Shakhboot bin Nahyan Al Nahyan, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the United Arab Emirates, today in Dubai.

The signing of this MOU begins a fruitful relationship between The Bahamas and the UAE. The UAE government is committed to providing technical assistance through their Technical Assistance Programme.  Embedded in the agreement, is a provision that at least fifty percent of the participants in the training programme are women.

Both The Bahamas and UAE are committed to working together on several fronts for the mutual advancement of both countries. The exchange of information will be invaluable as The Bahamas continues to push through the setbacks of the pandemic toward national and economic growth.


Photo Caption: Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas the Hon. Philip Davis, centre, Minister Mitchell, left, and HE Sheikh Shakhboot bin Nahyan Al Nahyan.

(Photo/OPM Communications)

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MP’s Graduate with Parliamentary Governance Certificates



January 18, 2022 – The Caribbean Democrat Union (CDU), in partnership with the Conservatives Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) Programme, held an Online Graduation Ceremony on Friday January 14th 2022 for fifteen (15) Members of Parliament who successfully completed a one year certificate programme in Parliamentary Governance with McGill University in Canada.

This professional development certificate programme is recognized by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) and provided MP’s with important theoretical and practical knowledge in executing their roles and responsibilities as legislators. Sponsorship for the MP’s was provided by the Conservatives WFD Programme.

The successful graduates included:

  • Tracy Panton– MP Albert, UDP, Belize
  • Shyne Barrow – MP, Mesopotamia, UDP, Belize
  • Senator Hon. Sheena Pitts – UDP, Belize
  • Kerensia Morrison – MP St. Catherine North Eastern, JLP, Jamaica
  • Tova Hamilton – MP, Trelawny Northern, JLP, Jamaica
  • Dr. Michelle Charles – MP, St. Thomas Eastern, JLP, Jamaica
  • Tamika Davis – MP, Hanover Western, JLP, Jamaica
  • Rhoda Crawford – MP, Manchester Central, JLP, Jamaica
  • Anne Marie Vaz – MP, Portland Eastern, JLP, Jamaica
  • Krstyal Lee – MP, St. Anne North Western, JLP, Jamaica
  • Robert Miller – MP St. Catherine South Eastern, JLP, Jamaica
  • Heroy Clarke – MP, St. James Central, JLP, Jamaica
  • Dwight Sibblies – MP, Clarendon Northern, JLP, Jamaica
  • Morland Wilson – MP, Westmoreland Western, JLP, Jamaica
  • Senator Hon. Shevern John – NDP, St. Vincent and the Grenadines

The Online Graduation Ceremony was attended by The Most Hon. Andrew Holness Prime Minister of Jamaica, Maria Miller Conservative MP UK, Dr. Hon. Godwin Friday Leader of the Opposition St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Hon. Patrick Faber Leader of the Opposition Belize, Carola Weil Dean of Continuing Studies McGill University, Nick Francis Secretary General CDU, and other officials from the UK Conservative Party’s International Department and Faculty and Staff from McGill University.

Mr. Nick Francis in his remarks at the ceremony noted that this initiative was birthed through greater engagement and consultation with stakeholders in the region in light of the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and he was grateful to the administrators at McGill University for partnering with the CDU and the Conservatives WFD Programme to make this online training possible.

Hon. Patrick Faber and Dr. Hon. Godwin Friday extended congratulations to the graduates and expressed gratitude to the Conservatives WFD Programme, the CDU and McGill University on this successful collaboration to enhance parliamentary democracy in their respective countries.

A second cohort of trainees will commence the Parliamentary Governance Certificate with McGill University in March of this year and will include young prospective MP’s.


Dean of Continuing Studies at McGill University Carola Weil extended congratulations to the fifteen (15) MP’s for successfully completing the yearlong certificate programme in Parliamentary Governance and noted that this was an “important step towards the continuation of good governance and democracy around the world”

In addressing the graduates at the ceremony, Prime Minster the Most Hon. Andrew Holness noted his expectations that the training received will help to inform their advocacy, guide their involvement in policy development, and “contribute to a new cadre of political representatives that will always strive for the highest standards of excellence in governance, in parliamentary practice, and in political representation.”

Conservative MP Maria Miller UK in a pre-recorded message to the graduates (the majority being new female MP’s) noted that in light of the challenges facing women in politics, “the Conservative WFD Programme is committed to strengthening democracy by creating a much more inclusive, accountable and transparent political system.”


Press Release: CDU

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PM Davis’ Remarks at Wreath Laying Ceremony – Majority Rule Day 2022



Happy Majority Rule Day to all and thank you for coming

I thank the organizers of this wreath laying ceremony because this auspicious occasion is a symbolic reminder of the significant role the Progressive Liberal Party and the Father of the Nation played in bringing about one of the most consequential and transformational events in our history, eclipsed only by the abolition of slavery in 1834.

With the addition of National Independence on 10th July 1973, these three epic events changed the course of Bahamian history forever and etched in the annals of history the Bahamian national identity and the depth of our indomitable spirit.

We must never grow weary of telling our story lest we lose our identity and heritage as a people.

Further — and more nationally — as a free, modern, democratic and independent state, history must record that Majority Rule Day is also an occasion where all Bahamians come together to reflect on and celebrate the enduring principles of democracy.  Today then, I stand with my Bahamian brothers and sisters from all walks of life in memorializing this day as a seminal moment in the ever-evolving Bahamian story.


We must never allow our detractors to minimize, trivialize or relegate this great day and event to the scrap heap of historical irrelevance. To do so is to dishonour the vision, memory and legacy of those great courageous souls on whose shoulders we stand.

We cannot and must not conveniently disinherit our glorious legacy because our truth is inconvenient to some.

A cause rooted in social justice, freedom fighters courageously stood in the vanguard of change – unyielding in their demand that all were created equal — with God-given rights to human dignity without regard to race, gender, colour or creed. This stand of conscience galvanized a nation, a generation of Bahamians, and in the process significantly reshaped the character and national identity of The Bahamas forever.

I pay tribute to the many unsung heroes and heroines whose endearing and enduring legacies of selflessness and shared sacrifices remain the gold standard of our national culture in both public life and in the way we conduct our personal affairs with one another.

I continue to draw, conviction, inspiration and influence from the passion of the Suffragettes, the labour movement, the church and from countless Bahamians who put it all on the line to secure a more perfect Commonwealth.

Speaking of passion, conviction, inspiration and influence, I wish to take a moment to recount the role the late Sir Sidney Poitier played and the contributions he made during our journey to Majority Rule.

As a Bahamian with dual citizenship, Sir Sidney used his celebrity status in the struggle for civil rights —  fighting racism, bigotry and injustice in both the United States and The Bahamas.

Many Bahamians still recall his speaking to the issue at a reception in his honour to the then United Bahamian Party (UBP) government in recognition of his Academy Award for ‘Lilies of the Field.’

A well-known story in PLP circles is his assistance to the Progressive Liberal Party in the run up to the 1967 general elections. There is an iconic photo of Sir Sidney and Sir Lynden at the back of an open limousine celebrating the 1967 victory.

May he rest in peace.

As a beneficiary of their sacrificial work, I thank them all — Sir Lynden Pindling, Sir Milo Butler, Sir Randal Fawkes, Sir Clifford Darling, Dame Doris Johnson and Sir Sidney Poitier — for their passion, faith, perseverance and uncompromising commitment to social justice, democracy, freedom and a sense of fair play.

It is indeed an honour and a privilege to stand on their broad proverbial shoulders to continue their invaluable work in building a stronger and more perfect Commonwealth to positively impact the lives of generations yet unborn.

Our cause is indeed national, inclusive and intergenerational in its nature, range and scope.

On behalf of my wife Ann Marie, my cabinet and parliamentary colleagues, my government, the officers and members of the Progressive Liberal Party, I extend best wishes and highest regards to the people of The Bahamas as we celebrate Fifty-Five years of Majority Rule.

May Almighty God continue to bless the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.

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