The Bahamas PM defends sacking of housing minister
Prime Minster Hubert Ingraham says he has nothing against former Housing Minister Kenneth Russell.
FREEPORT, Grand Bahama Island, Monday December 12, 2011- Prime Minster Hubert Ingraham is standing by his decision to sack Housing Minister Kenneth Russell who served in parliament for the past 15 years.
“I assure you, I did what any prime minister who is worth his salt would do to a minister who acts in a manner inconsistent with the cabinet and the government of The Bahamas,” the prime minister said.
“There was nothing personal about it. It is what had to be done.”
Russell was fired on Saturday after a fallout over a proposed development for the islands.
PM Ingraham said the former minister decided to promote the project even though it was rejected by the government on four separate occasions.
Ingraham, who heads the Free National Movement, told supporters last night that he had previously made an “offer” to Russell for him not to contest the High Rock constituency.
That offer, he said, was subsequently withdrawn after the minister broke ranks with his cabinet colleagues.
“He didn’t tender the resignation and so I did what my duty was - dismiss him,” Ingraham said.
“I have nothing against him notwithstanding what he says about me. He has been my friend, he is still my friend.”
The former housing minister maintains he did nothing wrong and has accused the prime minister of being a tyrant.
He said he is still a member of the FNM and plans to contest the next election on the party ticket.
“The FNM is my party. I’ve been there from the beginning and I will continue to work with the FNM, and I intend to seek the nomination of the East Grand Bahama constituency for the FNM in the next general election,” Russell said.
The East Grand Bahama constituency association yesterday voted unanimously to secure a new candidate for the area.