Confronted by many national issues, and criticized for the handling of them, the Free National Movement Government, under Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis, now has yet another pressing matter to deal with.
Comments by a key representative, of BTC’s parent company, Balan Nair, that went viral, have put Prime Minister Dr. Minnis and Bahamian employees of the communication organization in a negative light.
Video clips of a meeting Nair held with staffers in Jamaica, expressed that the performances of the company’s Jamaican staffers, as compared to Bahamian workers at BTC, is like “night and day.” In referring to Jamaican workers, he commended them and said they created a store environment “bustling with energy” and said that was the difference.
Nair, CEO of Liberty Latin America, the BTC controlling entity, also opted to tell a story regarding a meeting he had with PM Dr. Minnis. His reference to an incident has been labeled disrespectful.
Union leaders have hit out at Nair. Parliamentary Secretary in the Office of the Prime Minister in New Providence, Pakesia Parker-Edgecombe also, expressed outrage over the comments of Nair.
Does that suffice though?
Former Bahamas Communications and Public officers Union (BCPOU) President Bernard Evans, who is now the National Congress of Trade Unions chief, has gone to the extreme, in calling for this government to sever ties with Liberty Latin America.
Following are Evans’ quotes from the Tribune Business section: “Maybe the time has come to part ways, cut our losses and see how we can get it back. Maybe it’s time to give us back BTC and let us run it because we were successful prior to the sale. This has been a total catastrophe.”
Present BCPOU President Dino Rolle called Nair’s remarks “repulsive and insulting” in the Nassau Guardian. He said further: “The Bahamian people are waiting and they ought to be waiting, as my members here in BTC are waiting, to hear from the prime minister. What say ye, sir, to what Mr. Nair said about your actions in a closed meeting?”
Indeed, just how will the prime minister handle this one?
Firstly, he ought to be insistent on an apology from Nair. The statement by Parker-Edgecombe, via the Office of the Prime Minister, is certainly not enough in our view. All Bahamians should be up in arms. We could understand Bahamians finding the Nair remarks derisive and not becoming of a senior officer in an investment organization, partnering with The Bahamas.