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Over a period of less than two years there have been four different individuals at the top rung of the Bahamas Cricket Association’s (BCA) executive ladder.
Greg Taylor ran afoul of a solid faction in the BCA. Despite some positive steps taken by the BCA during his tenure, he became quite unpopular. Former president Sidney Deveaux stood in the breach and in the aftermath became the chief again.
Amid infighting inclusive of court action, Deveaux, although very dedicated, moved aside due to intense pressure that kept mounting within the cricket ranks. In stepped interim president Ivan ‘Abaco’ James. The cricket climate did not change for the better.
Instead, according to ma ...
Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty has launched a concierge and property management division, making it a full service real estate company.
Mike Lightbourn, president of Coldwell Banker Lightbourn Realty, said the new division is in keeping with his company's projected growth plan.
The new service covers vacation rentals, property staging, coordinating general home maintenance, repairs and renovations, concierge relocation services, bill payment and custom tailored management packages.
Owen Shephard, with a background in real estate and construction, heads the new division.
Shephard said the company provides a "truly turnkey" service and takes the hassle out of relocation, home ownership, sales and rentals.
Relocation services also cover helping expats with the school enrolment process for their children, or application for membership into clubs and marinas.
The home staging aspect concentrates on making properties appealing to the highest number of prospects with the goal of selling homes faster and maximizing profits.
Mike Lightbourn Real Estate became affiliated with the giant U.S. based real estate franchise, Coldwell Banker, in 1999, operating from rented premises on Bay Street.
Today it is headquartered on East Shirley Street, two doors away from the Bahamas Real Estate Association.
The business has grown steadily and now has offices in Abaco, Exuma and Long Island, and agents in Andros, the Berry Islands, Bimini and Eleuthera, including Spanish Wells and Harbour Island.
The Coldwell Banker network covers about 3,000 offices worldwide.
Dr. Hubert A. Minnis (FNM-Killarney), the leader of the official opposition, has his work cut out for him. He has some big political shoes to fill as he seeks to reconstruct and mold the shell-shocked Free National Movement (FNM) in his own image. The ever pervasive shadow and hologram of Hubert A. Ingraham (FNM-North Abaco) loom large over his shoulders.
I have long predicted that Dr. Minnis would emerge as de facto leader of the FNM, even if, for the time being, the former leader is, in fact, the de jure leader of that defunct party. So said, so done. At a recent press conference or was it a one man, as usual, diatribe, Ingraham demonstrated that he is still of the bogus and mistaken view that he is still relevant in Bahamian politics.
The biggest single reason why the FNM went down in flames in the general election is Ingraham and his abrasive style of leadership. Yes, he used to be relevant, bold and fresh. Today, he is irrelevant, timid and stale, with all due respect. His shelf life has expired but he continues to act and believe that Bahamians still want to purchase a rancid loaf of bread.
Dr. Minnis, however, has what it takes to become prime minister of this nation. Some misguided persons think that it is all about being bombastic. Others, just as deluded, believe that a leader must wear his or her mantle on their shoulders like some big and bad bully.
The days of such leaders are over in The Bahamas. What we want today is a mixture of both where compassion is combined with laser-like focus on the issues and concerns which impact ordinary Bahamians on a daily basis. Political insecurity and one-man band scenarios have plagued our country for too long and we must move beyond them. Who is Dr. Minnis the man and is he up to the task of unseating the now resurgent Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) administration?
I am not a PLP and I would not even talk about the FNM. What I am, however, is a true born Bahamian who has an unequalled passion for my country and the orderly advancement of all who call this nation home, bar none. Political tribalism will be the death blow to the hoped for success of the PLP. Far too many so called PLPs believe that God Himself bestowed this nation upon them and to hell with the rest of us who may not belong to their tribe.
Already one is witnessing the return to positions of influence of the "old guard" within the PLP and already one is able to cringe when one sees how contracts and other governmental favors and perks are being handed out, like candy, to those who bow at the altar of Perry Christie and the boneless sycophants who worship the rest of them.
Mind you, don't get me wrong, in politics this is the way it is. I submit, however, that there must be several slices of the collective loaf of bread available for other Bahamians regardless of political affiliation. It is morally wrong and politically unacceptable for the whole hog to be shared amongst only those who belong to a governing party.
This is the difference which Dr. Minnis will bring to the table. He is a self-made man whose means have very little to do with his political posture or the virtue of his being in the House of Assembly. Whatever he might have he earned it the old fashioned way by hard work, focusing on an agenda and by prudent investments with his own income.
Lynden Pindling, Christie and Ingraham, by contrast, never had to really work hard in their natural lives. None of them, God bless them all, has ever had to work "hard" in the private sector for too long.
Dr. Minnis came from relatively humble beginnings and had to go out to work early in his life. Yes, his father may have been able to do something for him, but basically he came up the rough side of the mountain. He has a tenacity and attention to detail that few frontline politicians seem to possess or have the ability to display. His speaking style is adequate to the task at hand and he is a sharp debater in the House of Assembly. His feathers are not ruffled easily.
In going to meet the man called Dr. Hubert A. Minnis, I am of the firm view that he is more than capable and able to stand his ground in any and all circumstances. I am also aware that some of my PLP friends and enemies (and I have a load of them both) will question why I seek to praise and embellish the abilities of the leader of the opposition but I call a spade a spade. I serve at the altar of no tin gods, iron men or Fruit of the Loom women.
"Going to meet the Man" is the title of a book written some years ago by the now deceased, celebrated black American writer James Baldwin. The sentiments expressed therein by Baldwin are applicable, in today's context, to the leader of the opposition. Dr. Minnis, eventually, will reconstruct and mold the now shell-shocked FNM into a force to be respected by its detractors.
If the PLP fails to deliver on its big gold dream, the average Bahamian will be merciless in his/her treatment of that party come the next general election. The immediate task at hand for Dr. Minnis, however, may well be a hopeless one. The upcoming by-election in North Abaco, in my submission, will be lost, big time by the FNM unless they immediately put certain measures in place.
In going to meet the man, Dr. Minnis must rise to the occasion. If he fails to do so, and I am of the view that he is being set up to so do, his leadership momentum will be subjected to severe challenges. Do I know how they in the FNM would be able to retain North Abaco? Absolutely. Will I so advise them?
To God then, in all things, be the glory.
- Ortland H. Bodie Jr.
Newly-ratified Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) candidate for the upcoming North Abaco by-election Renardo Curry said he has blood in his eyes as he prepares to try to bring North Abaco MP and former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham's long-held seat back into the hands of the governing party.
Curry, who addressed party leaders and hundreds of other party faithful at PLP headquarters on Farrington Road last night, said with Ingraham out of the way the people of North Abaco are willing to make a change.
"I live among the people. I know their concerns after campaigning for over a year, and you would think I would be a better [representative]," he told The Nassau Guardian.
Curry, 38, will run against Greg Gomez, the Free National Movement's (FNM) ratified candidate for North Abaco, and S. Ali McIntosh, the servant leader of the Bahamas Constitution Party.
Curry said last night that Gomez is his wife's first cousin, but he will defeat him nonetheless.
While some political observers think the by-election is the first major test of the FNM and its leader, Dr. Hubert Minnis, some have said it will also test whether the governing party has lost or gained momentum, depending on the outcome.
At Sir Lynden Pindling Centre, Prime Minister and PLP Leader Perry Christie told The Guardian that Curry has made a compelling case that he can emerge victorious after losing to the former prime minister in the last general election.
"He brought a lot of people with him from the constituency who all have come down to indicate that Hubert Ingraham had a lot of personal support, and they believe on a real considered basis that that personal support is not transferable to another candidate. And so he is convinced that he will be a good candidate and at the end of it all he will be the winning candidate," said Christie.
The prime minister said that the government will put its full support behind Curry's candidacy.
"I think it's important for us to communicate to the people of Abaco that they have an opportunity for them to have their representative, in Mr. Curry, sitting around the table and being a part of the governing party and being able therefore, to represent their best interests," he said.
"So the choice will be to vote for a candidate (Curry) who will go into the political wilderness with the rest of his colleagues and [attempt to] rebuild the FNM back into a party that people could consider electing as a government.
"In the meantime, they have four years in which they could have Mr. Curry sitting around the table and making decisions which could impact their lives right now. So for me, the choice is clear."
Curry won five of the 12 polling divisions in that constituency in the last general election.
Ingraham secured his seat with 2,235 votes while Curry got 1,856 votes.
Curry, 38, said this week that the margin of his loss --379 votes -- is a reflection of his support, which he said has increased since May 7.
The North Abaco native said he thinks Abaconians are ready to return the seat to the PLP, something they have not done in 25 years.
As previously reported, a by-election must be called within 60 days after Ingraham's resignation from the House of Assembly becomes effective on August 31.
In a statement released last night, the PLP said it is committed to presenting young and energetic leadership to the Bahamian people, and Curry embodies that.
Curry was the sole applicant for the seat, according to the PLP.
"This should come as no surprise because the Prime Minister and PLP Leader Perry Christie advised the public on May 18 that Mr. Curry had indicated a preference to forego a senatorial appointment in order to put himself in a position of maximum readiness for the anticipated by-election in the North Abaco constituency," said the PLP.
"If successful at the polls, Mr. Curry will join a class of government parliamentarians that are collectively among the youngest group ever to sit in the halls of Parliament."
The PLP won 29 of the 38 seats in the House of Assembly and the FNM secured the remaining nine.
Curry said if successful as the new MP for North Abaco he would place emphasis on job creation programs through central and local government projects, which would include the establishment of a job placement program for college graduates; a technical learning institution such as BTVI on Abaco, and he also plans to support National Health Insurance.
He will return to Abaco today to continue campaigning, and expects PLP officials to join him on the ground in the coming weeks as the campaign heats up.
On July 14 you printed a letter to the editor from a Committed FNM. Is that FNM committed to staying in opposition or committed to the failure of the Free National Movement (FNM) party? They said that the FNM is having difficulty getting a candidate for North Abaco and that Hubert Ingraham should stay on as the representative. First of all, no one kicked Hubert Ingraham out of the House of Assembly or the FNM party. He decided to quit. I recall when he came out of retirement last time, saying they wanted him back and asked him to return. So the committed FNM must have been one of those people who asked him back last time, so I don't expect them to support anyone else but Hubert Ingraham and all of his political operatives.
No one man makes any party. There will be an FNM party after Hubert Ingraham just as it survived after Sir Cecil Wallace-Whitfield, same as there will be a Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) after Sir Lynden Pindling and Perry Christie. People need to accept that the organization will survive as long as the remaining people have the same goal. However, if there are more 'committed' FNMs like the one who wrote this article, the party is in deep trouble because they will destroy themselves before the next general election.
Supporters like Kevin Evans and the Committed FNM are trying to resurrect the political careers of the same political rejects the Bahamian people voted out on more than one occasion. Look at the track record of Tommy Turnquest and Dion Foulkes. Not only did voters reject them this time, but they were defeated before. They were not the dream team to lead the FNM into victory then and they are in a worse position to lead the party now. Carl Bethel has been in political exile for a while now. Not only was he defeated in the last election but his own party rejected him as chairman.
The Committed FNM feels that Loretta Butler-Turner is doing well in her role in opposition. At least she is better organized now than when Melanie Griffin was ripping her apart about her own ministry. Loretta Butler-Turner can argue a point to the gates of hell because she is good at being loud and boisterous, but she lacks organization and content. When confronted with the organized ministerial attacks of the then Shadow Minister Melanie Griffin, Loretta Butler-Turner would resort to below the belt personal attacks describing Melanie as uneducated. She may not have attended the best schools as you Mrs. Turner, but she sure did a better job as minister of social services. Many people think that Turner, though an eloquent speaker, lacks focus and is very disorganized. I wonder how Ingraham coped with her style, which is polar opposite to his? That must have been challenging for him.
Dr. Hubert Minnis, whose style is similar to Ingraham's in terms of organization, promptness and focus, will have his hands full with Turner, who will try her best to undermine and displace his leadership. Dr. Minnis has already led a conclave for the wounded FNM party to provide the vision for the organization moving forward. He seems dedicated to bringing more focus and improvements to the party. He seems focused on mentorship and leadership roles for the youth and women in the party, which would be attractive for those joining the party. If he brings the machinery and methodology of the FNM Killarney branch, with its pro-active communication, use of technology and his new style of politics to the FNM party, they will be well positioned to win the next government.
So Committed FNM, that is your leader you are dissing. You should be ashamed of yourself, causing this type of embarrassment to your party. Show you can be really supportive of the new leaders of the FNM. And, would the real committed FNMs stop writing destructive articles that air the dirty laundry and instead turn their attacks on the PLP who is laughing at these articles as we fight among each other.
- Concerned FNM
When the North Abaco member of Parliament Hubert Ingraham retires from politics as he promised, a by-election will be held in the area only a few months after the general election.
While turnout in our general elections is usually high, fewer people usually come out for by-elections. Some think that these races don't determine the government, so why bother.
It would be a shame if a large number of the people of North Abaco take this position. The Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) has not held this seat since Ingraham was expelled from that party in the 1980s. It wants the seat back and thinks Renardo Curry, the party's candidate in the last general election, is perfectly positioned to win it. If the PLP is successful in the by-election, it would have a majority in the House of Assembly of 30 seats to the eight held by the opposition Free National Movement (FNM).
The new FNM leadership team needs an early success under its belt. Already there is some internal rumbling in the party about new leader Dr. Hubert Minnis. While the doctor is a hard worker and disciplined, some longstanding members of the FNM wonder if he has the charisma to lead the FNM to electoral success. They do not see him as an Ingraham or Sir Lynden Pindling type.
Abaconians should come forward in large numbers to vote so that the person chosen to succeed Ingraham is chosen by collective will, rather than him or her merely being the candidate selected by a small number of partisans.
When Abaco has problems, or when Abaco needs its voice heard in New Providence, every Abaconian should want the best person possible to present the case for the island and its people as the elected representative for the area.
The PLP and FNM will field candidates. But that should not prevent others from entering the race who also want to serve the community. Independents and small party candidates should also take a shot at being the next representative of the area if they feel they have the passion and ability to serve. We should all be proud of our democracy and participate and we should also be enthused about having the opportunity to select our representatives.
The eyes of the country will be on the North Abaco race. Most people think the governing party will have the advantage because it has the machinery of government behind it and FNMs are demoralized after the last election loss, hence they will stay home. Abaco should defy conventional wisdom and come out and vote.
Every independence season I reflect on what this milestone means to our country - 39 years later I still question how independent we really are.
I read with interest an article in Thursday's Nassau Guardian, by William Wong entitled "Mega resorts can cause big problems". A former president of the Real Estate Association, Wong cautioned government to resist allowing foreign developers to construct inappropriate mega resorts in our Family Islands. I fully endorse this view.
We do not need towering monstrosities that require expensive artificial energy sources to litter our Family Island landscapes. Our ancestors solved those problems years ago by building shelters that were oriented to the natural breezes, that were raised from the ground to cool the floor and allow it to breathe, that pitched the roofs to drain off the torrential rain, that added porches, windows, shutters and trees to shade the structure and make them comfortable, naturally.
The developers of Schooner Bay in Abaco have applied these lessons and more to produce a beautiful and sustainable community. I would urge the new government to arrange a visit there to see why persons from all over the world are flocking to invest in a community that reflects a way to life like we used to.
As the new government looks to provide economic activity on the Family Islands, I trust that its former "anchor property" mega schemes will be re-examined as the current global debate on living is now focused on the importance of sustainable development. As my former husband preached, our answers lie not outside of our country, but are intimately intertwined within it if we can only "see what we lookin' at" and embrace the lessons learned by our ancestors who have already done the work for us, having survived in harsh conditions by adopting commonsense solutions for their shelter, food, clothing and celebrating it with pride in our culture heritage.
Are we truly independent? Do we understand, appreciate, study and respect these same ancestors and learn from their valuable lessons? Or do we continue to let outsiders define who we are as a people and a country? If we truly respect and appreciate our past, we will not hesitate to make demands of those persons wishing to become a part of our wonderful archipelago to ensure that they abide by our rules and regulations, respect our heritage, adopt those practices that are best for our country, are suited to the scale of our country and reflect our sense of place.
If we are 39 years independent, colonialism is supposed to be dead. But is it? We will continued to be shackled in our mind if we continue to allow outsiders - just because they hold purse strings - to define us within their frames of reference and feel they have the power to dictate how and what we do in our country.
We can only be truly independent if:
1) We assess and acknowledge the abundant treasure inherent in the rich heritage of our past, present and future that is embedded within our people and our country;
2) We have pride in and respect who we are, where we came from, and what and why we do what we do first and foremost, which is achieved by;
3) Truly studying our history and learning from its important lessons, which is achieved by;
4) Embedding this crucial component into our educational system and showcasing it with pride all around our landscape on a continuous basis;
5) We are confident enough in our own sense of self and can articulate what this means so that we can "do for ourselves";
6) We respect the expertise of our own people, listen to their advice, invest in them and provide opportunity for them to build the country;
7) We are prepared to "eat sardines and grits" rather than prostitute ourselves to be dictated to by others.
The fruits of this labor cannot be achieved overnight, or within a political term - it is a long-term, sustainable investment of time and energy in your own people that will take time and patience to develop and nurture.
Our elderly people with their wisdom and our artisans and artists with their creativity, hold the key to unlock the closed door of treasures that are lying dormant and dusty behind the door of disuse. I hope that the country will take this opportunity to unite us once again in a community of Bahamian-ness so that we move forward, upward and onward together.
- Pam Burnside
I am writing in response to two letters that were recently printed in The Nassau Guardian and The Tribune taking me to task for calling on former Free National Movement (FNM) Leader Hubert Ingraham to defer retiring from the House of Assembly until 2017.
Let me make this clear: I fully support the new leader of the official opposition party Dr. Hubert Minnis (Killarney) and his deputy Loretta Butler-Turner (Long Island). I am glad that Dr. Minnis stepped up to the plate and accepted the leadership role of the FNM after many of its promising stars were wiped out in the May 7 general election. Had Dr. Minnis lost his seat to the Progressive Liberal Party's (PLP) Jerome Gomez, the FNM would have been in dire straits.
I believe that the FNM is in good hands. My only issue with Dr. Minnis is that he is not as dynamic as either Ingraham or Prime Minister Perry Christie. Still, I think he is an excellent member of Parliament who no doubt has brought his 21st century brand of leadership to the FNM.
It is his unique style of leadership which has caused him to win in convincing fashion in Killarney, despite the tidal wave of anti-FNM voters that had gone to the polls throughout The Bahamas. But I am still of the opinion that he and the remaining seven FNM members of Parliament may need help from an experience leader and parliamentarian.
I am not yet convinced that any of the FNM parliamentarians, except Butler-Turner, can go head to head with the prime minister, in terms of debating. What's more, the PLP has many other excellent debaters in the House who can run circles around the FNM's parliamentary caucus. I think that Dr. Minnis will only get better in the next several years.
But until then Ingraham should reconsider giving up his North Abaco seat, at least until 2017. Even after over two months since May 7 the FNM has yet to find a suitable replacement for Ingraham in North Abaco. This is all the more reason why Ingraham should stay on to help his party in the House. If there is any FNM representative who can go head to head with any of the 29 PLP members of Parliament when it comes to debating, it is Ingraham. He can hold his own. I am not saying that he should become the leader of the FNM. I understand that this is the post-Ingraham era. But the FNM members, four of whom are parliamentary rookies, can use his help and experience.
What is wrong with that? I think the FNM should give this some serious consideration before Ingraham officially retires. After all, what does the FNM have to lose by allowing him to stay on to assist Dr. Minnis?
- Kevin Evans
In 1985 or thereabouts, I asked my mother, "Who do you believe could become prime minister of The Bahamas following Sir Lynden Pindling?"
Without hesitation, she replied, "Hubert Ingraham".
I had not heard of the man before that and did not and could not know that one day I would work closely with him as that which my mother said he could be, prime minister of The Bahamas. I was 18 years old then.
In 1990, I would have an opportunity to get a first look at the political prowess of this man my mother said could be prime minister, as he was the lead player in the unfolding drama of the Marco City by-election in that year.
By that time he had already succeeded Sir Cecil Wallace-Whitfield as leader of the Free National Movement. He cut his political leadership teeth in the Marco City by-election, defeating the great Sir Lynden Oscar Pindling and his then entrenched and seemingly invincible Progressive Liberal Party (PLP). So began the legend of Hubert Ingraham, a genuinely brilliant political mind.
From 1992 to 2012, no personality loomed larger than Hubert Ingraham on the political landscape of The Bahamas. Between 1990 and 1997, his was the rising star while that of Sir Lynden was setting. In our history, they loom large at the center of the stage of political astuteness and outstanding leadership.
But to think of Ingraham merely in terms of political prowess is to miss the reality of the brilliant leadership skills he possessed. Hubert Ingraham possessed great vision, uncommon focus, dogged determination, impressive industry and work ethic and unassuming compassion. He has a sharp mind with photographic memory. Yes, he is demanding, watchful and jealous to guard his public integrity.
Diplomacy may not have been his hallmark at times, but it only suffered to get the job done and to pursue progress. He is a reformer, a doer, a results-minded person. His commitment to public service is 24/7 and in government it was a thing of beauty and wonder to behold. His timing in politics was often impeccable, as was his ability to make political points with just a word or a phrase.
In the true recorded history of our country, he will be credited with many achievements: freeing of the airwaves; introduction of elected local government; introduction of a school board system; implementation and modernization of the infrastructure of The Bahamas; the granting of autonomy to The College of The Bahamas; the upgrade of the social safety-net of The Bahamas; and the restoration of the good name of The Bahamas in the global community, just to name a few.
More than anything else, however, he will be that leader The Bahamas needed to navigate its ship of state through some of the worst experiences in our nation's history: the pre-1992 economic and social decay of The Bahamas; the effects of the terrorist attacks of 2001; and the Great Recession of 2008. In time, most, if not all, will come to see just how steady were his hands, how thoughtful his mind and how committed and courageous was his heart.
In this life, your detractors can be many, especially when you are a person on the move seeking to do great things and trying to make a difference. Your enemies can be ruthless in their characterization of you. Ingraham was the target of the venom of many such detractors and enemies. I say target and not "victim" because being around him, he never seemed to let the venom get to him. I know he was not immune but the poison never overcame him.
In fact, Ingraham's ability to ignore reacting negatively to the attacks of his detractors, both personal and otherwise, was admirable to say the least. Exacting revenge never seemed to occur in his response to those who would damage his reputation or misrepresent his efforts. Ingraham is not a perfect man. None of us are, but his seems a perfect love and dedication to public service and for this he shall long stand out as one of a kind.
I have no special dispensation to say so, but it is my opinion that blessed was this man who ascended from the humble shores of Abaco to the most powerful office in the land. Purposed to become one of the great leaders of our Caribbean region was this barefoot boy from Cooper's Town raised by his grandmother. Destined was this man who walked with kings and commoners with an ease seldom seen on such strong and accomplished leaders.
When they ask me about the times in which I lived, I will proudly tell them I lived in a time of promise, I lived in a time of better, I lived in a time of trust, for I lived in the time of Ingraham.
- Zhivargo Laing
Recently, a leading politician enthused: "Sir Lynden Pindling will have his place in our history. But to my mind, Hubert Alexander Ingraham is the greatest prime minister in the history of an independent Bahamas. History will be more than kind to him. History will celebrate him as the great reformer and modernizer."
This encomium to the former prime minister was delivered at an FNM function a few weeks ago by the party's Deputy Leader Loretta Butler-Turner. What makes such high praise even more noteworthy is that its author is the granddaughter of Sir Milo Butler, a father of the nation and a colleague of Sir Lynden and others in the struggle for majority rule and independence.
As Hubert Ingraham readies to retire from frontline politics, the assessment of his premiership will begin in earnest. Many are already of the view that, thus far, he has served as the nation's most illustrious prime minister in an independent Bahamas.
Sir Lynden, also a father of the nation, is a pivotal figure in an independent Bahamas, and will be accorded his due in the nation's history. In the pantheon of heroes, Sir Lynden is a sort of mythic figure, his portrait adorning the one dollar bill and his name on the nation's leading international airport.
Yet, leaving aside the Pindling mythology and the inevitable hagiography surrounding such a figure, Hubert Ingraham may prove, in the objective light of historical analysis, to have been a more transformational figure in significant ways. There is precedent for this.
By example, though Winston Churchill ranks high for leading Britain through World War II, it is Clement Atlee whom many British historians rank higher for his social welfare reforms and domestic policies including the inauguration of the National Health Service.
Sir Lynden and the early Progressive Liberal Party deserve credit for building many national institutions and empowering black Bahamians including helping to build a strong black middle class.
But as Sir Lynden's legacy is examined more dispassionately by historians and new generations of Bahamians he will be compared on his own merit and compared also with subsequent prime ministers, including Hubert Ingraham.
Stripped away from that analysis will be the cult of personality mentality that the country "owes" Sir Lynden or indeed any prime minister for what they did for The Bahamas. We live in a democracy where the very people who afford leaders the privilege of service may dismiss them at their will.
Though gratitude is due to those who serve the country, what is owed political leaders is a fair and honest assessment of their strengths and weaknesses, and accomplishments and failures.
It is an odd notion forwarded by some, that because he is a great man, that we should ignore Sir Lynden's failures. This bizarre notion was even advanced by some men of the cloth during a commission of inquiry investigating various matters relating to Sir Lynden's tenure as prime minister. Great men or women don't need their biographies whitewashed in order to maintain their greatness.
It is remarkable that those who seek to ignore Sir Lynden's failures are loath to afford Hubert Ingraham the same pass. Like his mentor, Hubert Ingraham will have to be judged in his full measure, by what he did and by what he failed to do.
Even as Sir Lynden is afforded his historic due, weighing down his legacy is what he failed to do and, more importantly, the terrible mistakes he made at great cost to the country. This is especially so given the giant of a leader that he was as the independence prime minister and as the iconic Moses figure having led Bahamians towards a promised land of majority rule and greater economic prospects.
Yet, having helped to secure these democratic rights and economic opportunities, Sir Lynden squandered what could have been an even more profound legacy for him and for the country. It would fall to Sir Lynden's self-professed, "most illustrious protégé... " to advance many of the promises Moses failed to keep.
To assess the successes and failures of our post independence prime ministers is to measure their tenures by the promises of majority rule and independence. Such an assessment will be more fact-driven and less reliant on one's emotional response to a given individual.
While some are driven to distraction and silly commentary by Ingraham's often brusque personality, it will be more his accomplishments and considerably less his personality that will be judged by history.
The Ingraham whom some delight in labeling a dictator, freed the broadcast media, which subsequently helped to play a role in the FNM's electoral defeats in 2002 and in 2012. One of the greatest weapons dictators have long enjoyed is control or intimidation of the media. Ingraham also instituted sweeping measures to make elections freer, fairer and more transparent.
Sir Lynden presided over an erosion of democracy keeping rigid state control of the broadcast media engendering and deepening a climate of fear where many were afraid to express their views. Under Sir Lynden's PLP, elections were much less free, fair and transparent, possible causing the FNM's 1987 election defeat.
So, who will historians judge as the more democratic prime minister when comparing Sir Lynden and Hubert Ingraham? Ushered into office by the flowering of Bahamian democracy, Sir Lynden followed the route of other strongmen, thwarting and sometimes strangling the very democratic ethos he promised to uphold. Hubert Ingraham followed another path, deepening our democracy and enhancing freedom of expression.
Yet, this is but one of many areas where history and generations to come will accord Hubert Ingraham a higher grade or status than his immediate predecessor.
There will be many other areas of accomplishment where the mentee will outstrip his mentor ranging from environmental protection, to creating a greater shareholding society, to local government to more progressive labor laws and social protections.
The range of Ingraham's and the FNM's accomplishments are extraordinary. We would be living in a more backward, less free, less modern country were it not for the soon to be former member of Parliament for North Abaco.
When Sir Lynden gave his farewell address in the House of Assembly in July 1997 he praised the still young Hubert Ingraham as, "the most illustrious protégé of mine thus far". A relatively short decade and a half later that protégé is set to give his farewell address to the House.
With his leave-taking, that protégé will be remembered mostly not as the Delivery Boy or Papa. He will be remembered, in the words of Butler-Turner as "the great reformer and modernizer", and in the minds of many, and quite possibly in the broader view of history, as the most illustrious prime minister, thus far, in an independent Bahamas.