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Former National Insurance Board (NIB) member Nicole Martin said yesterday the bonuses that NIB executives received were "outrageous", adding that she never would have approved such exorbitant amounts if the issue had come up during the meetings.
Martin, a trade unionist, was one of 11 members of the NIB board appointed by former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham.
"They are quite interesting," she said, referring to the amounts of money.
"I know it has been asserted that we approved those, but based on my recollection [and after consulting] my minutes, there was nothing presented to the board to indicate any individual bonuses at that magnitude. So it's quite interesting."
Had the bonuses been presented to the board, Martin said she would have objected to them.
"I am a trade unionist and part of what we would have talked about from time to time is the negotiations for the line workers at NIB and the union," she said.
"So I'm certain if that had come up I would have objected to it on the basis that bonuses need to be applied across the board and they need to be applied in a way that everyone is recognized for the outstanding contributions that they would have made throughout the year."
The Nassau Guardian reported earlier this week that eight NIB executives and one person on contract took home bonuses totaling $723,333 between January 2010 and May 2012.
NIB Director Algernon Cargill took home $194,791.66 in bonuses during that period, according to information made public in recent days.
According to the information, Cargill and other NIB executives received six bonus payments between January 8, 2010 and May 1, 2012.
Martin acknowledged that it is not uncommon for executives to receive higher bonuses than line staff.
However, she said "that kind of difference is unconscionable for me to even consider".
Former NIB Chairman Patrick Ward told The Nassau Guardian last week that the bonuses paid to NIB executives were reasonable and had the necessary authorization before they were paid out.
But Martin indicated that NIB's board only approved an overall budget. She said no individual contracts were provided.
"Certainly I don't have any information on any of that. And I referred to my minutes to reconfirm," she said.
Martin's statement came days after former board member John Pinder spoke out on the issue.
Pinder said he was "shocked" by the amount paid out.
"I can't tell you that I, John Pinder, would have approved that amount of bonus being paid to any individual -- no; not for a fund that was in some sort of jeopardy of being depleted in 20 years or so. I certainly wouldn't have had the conscience to agree to that amount being paid. I couldn't have done that," he said.
In addition to Ward, Martin and Pinder, other members of the board were Belinda Wilson, Robert Sands, Fr. Etienne Bowleg, Brian Nutt, Evan Dean, Van Diah, Debbie Ferguson and Dr. Robin Roberts.
Funeral Service for Mary Daphne Anne Scott, 70, of Dominica Street, Golden Gates #2 and Formerly of Port Nelson, Rum Cay, will be held on Saturday March 24th, 10:00 a.m. at St. George’s Anglican Church, Montrose Avenue. Archdeacon G. Kingsley Knowles, Fr. Andrew Toppin and Deacon Whitfield Hutchinson will officiate. Interment will follow in St. Anne’s Cemetery, Fox Hill.
By SANCHESKA BROWN
Tribune Staff Reporter
A MASSIVE fire ripped through a Haitian village over the weekend, destroying nine homes and leaving more than a dozen people homeless.
Police say the fire started around 8.43pm on Friday at a shanty town in Gamble Heights, off Baillou Hill Road South.
Fire Chief Walter Evans said within minutes of the fire being reported the first fire truck was on the scene.
"The first responding vehicle got there before 9pm. After seeing the gravity of the situation, four more trucks were dispatched to assist. On arrival to the area firefighters met nine single storey wooden structures engulfed in flames. All nine homes were comple ...
Funeral service for Maude Zelma Neely, a resident of Windward Isles Way and formerly of Rock Sound, Eleuthera, who passed away on 25th May, 2011, will be held at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, Boyd Road, on Saturday at 2:00 p.m.
Officiating will be Deacon Gregory Taylor. Interment follows in Woodlawn Gardens, Soldier Road.
Left with cherished memories that will linger in our hearts are her: Loving husband: Alpheus Neely; two sons: Leslie Wells and David Neely; Two daughters: Sandra Wells-Carmona and Joyce Brown. Eight grand-children: Leslie Wells Jr., Gerard Carmona, Jeffrey, Jayden and Joyelle Brown, Devante, Blair and Dave Neely; One brother: Daniel Pyfrom; Two sisters: Judy Pyfrom-Masnyk and Vernia Pyfrom; Two sons-in-law: Luis Carmona and Swanson Brown; One daughter-in-law: Ramona Neely; Brothers-in-law: Arnold and Michael Neely and Kenneth Beckford; Sisters-in-law: Avis Pyfrom, Sister Jacinth Neely, Marie Newton, Florence Beckford, Angela, Detrich and Monica Neely; Two Aunts: Zelma Nottage and Mizpah Evans; Two Uncles: Daniel and Lloyd Evans; Nephews: Danny, Dervin, Derward, Darren, Vernon, Marcus (Griffin), Thomas, Andrew, Teko, Aaron, Adam, Christopher, Mario, Mark, Earl, Livingston, Marcus (Knowles) and Miguel; Nieces: Denette, Debbie, Leshan, Denica, Judy (JJ), Desiree, Anastacia, Amanda, Denise, Monique, Deandre, Marcia (SP.Vil); Cousins: Dr. Dave Sands, Kendal, Steve, Carl, Ethel, Julie, Donald, Keith, Dorethea, Danny, Andrew, Beth, Cheryl, Darlene, Chris, Douglas, Donna, Zelda, Jude, Johnny, Edith, Wideon, Vandolyn, Livan, Sidney, Donna, June, Vynona, Thelma, Naomi, Willie, Roger. Numerous grand-nieces and grand-nephews and a host of other relatives and friends including: The Carey Family, The Mingo Family, Monique Sands and Family, Yvette Knowles & Family, Celeste Goodman, Beverly Brown & Family, Barbara Richards & Family, Carmen Ingraham, Marina Moultrie, Ruth Turnquest, Violet Grant, Vandolyn Fox, David Armbrister, Patrick Murphy and Family, Perry Darling, Charles Sealy & Family, Hon. Frank Watson, Hon. Carl Bethel, Staff of the Ministry of Education, Learning Resources Unit, G.K. Symonette Library, Sadie Curtis Primary, Family Guardian Insurance Company, Coconut Grove Preschool, and Golden Gates and Rock Sound, Eleuthera Communities.
Friends may pay their last respects at Demeritte's Funeral Home, Market Street, from 10-6:00 p.m. on Friday and on Saturday from 9-12:00 noon and at the church from 1:00 p.m. until service time.
Democratic National Alliance (DNA) Leader Branville McCartney has had a mouthful to say in recent days about the one-year anniversary of the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) gold rush administration of Prime Minister Perry Christie.
McCartney told The Nassau Guardian that he cries shame on the Christie regime and that he really wishes the Bahamian people could be in the position to sue the government for breaching its contract. He also went on to say that what the PLP did in its A Charter for Governance is just "pure written garbage".
The PLP's performance in its first year has inspired very little confidence among thousands of swing voters who had decided to hitch their wagons to the gold rush train. Measured by its own standards, the Christie administration has obviously failed. Whoever wrote the Charter for Governance was so keen on winning the general election that he obviously didn't give much thought to its feasibility.
Any person who believed that the PLP would be able to double the investment for education is either gullible or doesn't have all his marbles. I think most Bahamians are well aware of the PLP's lackluster performance, notwithstanding McCartney's recent pronouncements in the press. Having said all that, I am of the view that McCartney should be the last person to complain about the PLP government's performance. I believe that McCartney is the main reason why the PLP is in power today. In early 2010, McCartney resigned from the Ingraham Cabinet as minister of state for immigration. After his resignation, he told the press that he remains a committed FNM MP and that he is loyal to the leadership of then-Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham. However, in 2011 he resigned from the FNM and subsequently founded the DNA party that same year.
McCartney fielded candidates in each of the 38 constituencies in the 2012 general election. It is a known fact that DNA candidates played spoiler to the FNM in at least 15 constituencies. I am convinced that had it not been for McCartney, FNMs Tommy Turnquest, Norris Bain, Zhivargo Laing, Carl Bethel, Desmond Bannister and about nine or eleven others would all be sitting members of Parliament today. I don't believe McCartney realistically expected to win the election. What he wanted to do was to hurt the FNM and Hubert Ingraham.
I say this because one of his former candidates, Osman Johnson, who ran in Pineridge, Grand Bahama, said after the election that while he was disappointed that the DNA lost, at least his party prevented the FNM from getting back into power. This was their plan all along. To say that McCartney sent his candidates on a fool's errand would be a grave mistake. These people never entertained any serious thoughts of winning at all. I submit that their primary goal was to frustrate the FNM at the polls; and in so doing, they helped the PLP's cause.
The 13,000-plus Bahamians who voted for the DNA were used in McCartney's game of chess with the FNM. Now he wants to be in every newspaper griping about the failures of the PLP government in order to appear relevant. He needs to know that thousands of FNMs could care less about what he has to say. Rank-and-file FNMs are so upset with McCartney that some of them have vowed not to support the FNM if McCartney ever returns to the party. I honestly don't believe that McCartney appreciates the magnitude of his decision to establish a fringe party. He literally changed the course of Bahamian history for the worst - and all because of some minor spat he had with someone in the Ingraham administration. We need people who will put country ahead of politics.
Rather than appearing in the press to offer his unsolicited analysis on the PLP government, he should instead focus his attention on assisting Rodney Moncur -- a man who ran for the DNA in the Bains Town and Grants Town constituency. Moncur's home was recently destroyed by fire. As the old adage goes, charity begins at home. If the DNA isn't concerned about the few members it has remaining, why should Bahamians believe that the party is concerned about them?
- Kevin Evans
I have a gut feeling that the days of the Democratic National Alliance (DNA) are numbered. And this despite the recent announcement by former Free National Movement (FNM) member of Parliament for Bamboo Town and DNA Leader Branville McCartney this past July that DNA executives will meet to determine whether or not a new chairman for his party will be selected before the next general election...