Around the island, up to Sunday not a whole lot of Independence displays, were in evidence.
The Independence Calendar of Events issued by the Grand Bahama Office of the Prime Minister went on as planned and will continue through this week, but thus far, there has been a low-key approach to the 45th anniversary of the birth of a nation, back in 1973. That high exuberant spirit has not been noticeable.
Perhaps when the big day comes, on Tuesday of this week, the mood of the people here in Grand Bahama would be different. Maybe not.
Despondency abounds in Grand Bahama. People are in low spirits. Many residents are discouraged and uncertain of what the future holds for them. Based on the calls and emails that come into The Freeport News, a lot are disappointed and frustrated.
There is disappointment because of the extreme “high” some Grand Bahamians were on after listening throughout a rousing campaign leading up to the May general elections of last year, that under Dr. Hubert Minnis and the Free National Movement, life would be elevated. The expectation was that the change for the better would have been felt by now.
Here it is two months into the second year of governance under Dr. Minnis and company and too many Grand Bahamians, and, we understand others from the wider Bahamas, are not satisfied that their expectations based on the pledges made on the campaign trail, have been met.
So, here we are right on top of a major milestone in the country’s history and the enthusiasm level does not compare at all with the history of the moment.
At the National Flag Raising ceremony this past Friday at the Harold DeGregory Complex, Minister of State in the Grand Bahama Office of the Prime Minister, Senator Kwasi Thompson said being a Bahamian was special.
“Under the guidance of the Almighty God, we have stood united in a shared purpose to achieve profound social and economic advancement. We have much to thank God for, as it is an honor and a privilege to be Bahamian,” he said.
That is true.
There is pride in being a Bahamian. We share that view based on the stable society we are able to exist in.
The truth be told though, due to the pressures of trying to keep heads above water, financially, many Bahamians are not feeling that special at this time.
Therefore, thus far indeed, Grand Bahamians have not nearly been as enthusiastic about the Independence celebrations, as they could be.