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McCartney blasts govt ahead of first anniversary

  • Branville McCartney.

KRYSTEL ROLLE
Guardian Staff Reporter
krystel@nasguard.com

Published: May 04, 2013

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Democratic National Alliance (DNA) Leader Branville McCartney has charged that the government has failed to fulfill many of its promises.

"I cry shame on them," said McCartney in an interview this week.

"I really wish the Bahamian people can be in the position to sue the government for breach of contract because what [it] did in [its] Charter for Governance is just pure written garbage because they have not lived up to the many things they said they were going to do.

"The mortgage relief program, not one person benefited from it. Urban Renewal 2.0, nothing has happened, and I don't care what the commissioner (of police) or anyone else is saying that crime has decreased; they may be talking about a certain area of crime, but overall crime is still our number one issue in the country."

The Christie administration will on Tuesday observe one year since its victory at the polls.

The government is facing widespread assessments in various circles.

Last month, Minister of State for Finance Michael Halkitis admitted that the mortgage relief plan, introduced over seven months ago, has yet to help a single struggling homeowner.

Halkitis conceded that the government will have to “go back to the drawing board” and come up with a different plan.

As it relates to crime, according to statistics released by Commissioner Ellison Greenslade last month, crime decreased by 13 percent between January 1 and April 14, 2013 compared to the same period in 2012.

There were 3,492 crimes reported during this period last year compared to 3,025 reported this year.

But McCartney doubts the veracity of the crime statistics. He added that the fear of crime is as high as it ever was.

McCartney charged that the government has also failed to double its investment in education as it said it would do.

Among other things, the PLP said it planned to address crime, education, healthcare, mortgage relief, border control, job creation, gambling, financial services, the cost of electricity, taxes and Grand Bahama’s economy during its first year in office.

Prime Minister Perry Christie explained after the election that the government would be limited by budgetary constraints.

“In our very short time in office, it has become clear to us that the previous administration has, through its actions and fiscal policies, constrained our room to maneuver,” Christie said.

“Faced with their legacy of cost overruns and carryover spending commitments into the next fiscal year, we have moved to begin implementing key components of our Charter for Governance to the extent feasible in a fiscally responsible manner.”


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