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Challenge To The Two-Party System

EDITOR, The Tribune.

Last week we celebrated the 54th anniversary of Majority Rule – the day we pay homage to the pioneers of our modern democracy. Whether you stayed safe at home, took a day in at the beach or exercised your constitutional right to protest, we must never forget the day’s importance. I would like us to reflect on three significant submissions contrary to the notion that The Bahamas is a two-party political nation.

  1. There was no “Two-Party” system in the transition to A New Bahamas.

Since its formation, the Democratic National Alliance (DNA) has been pressed against the narrative that we exist in a “two-party system”, but as Winston Churchill once said, “the farther backward a man can look is the farther forward he is likely to see.” On the 10th January 1967, Sir Randol Fawkes led the Labour Party (ie, a third party) to a seat at the table, which led to a short-lived coalition government.

Despite many Bahamians attributing this past event as a victory for the PLP, the truth is, that moment was beyond the UBP, PLP or any other political party to emerge thereafter. A closer look will reveal how we, the average voters, possess the same power to redefine our future for “A New and Better Bahamas”. A New Bahamas that will be pushed to compromise until we get it right for the masses – ultimately advocating for and listening to the unheard cries over many decades. The Bahamian people have a real opportunity or beacon of hope to achieve this, with trust, in a revamped DNA party. A party with visionary leaders that will not fold if elected, and instead deliver and uphold good governance.

  1. History often repeats itself, so let’s make history for the Better.

If we do not learn from our past, then we will continue to perpetuate the same internal struggles. Indeed, the struggle for economic empowerment, equality of opportunity, and social justice still remain the unheard cries of the Bahamian people.

Since 2017, the DNA has championed issues and supported movements that address good governance, crime, education, environment, energy, food security, health and even our natural resources. We have been the only party to be present and accounted for - advocating for the best policies for a Better Bahamas. For more information visit: https://www.mydnaparty.org/issues The question is, will the average Bahamian register, participate and most importantly vote to ensure an historic change for our policies to be effectively implemented within The Bahamas.

  1. Your vote matters!

My fellow Bahamians, I understand that many of us are extremely wary about voting in this upcoming general election. However, the next general election will undoubtedly be one of the most important elections of our lifetime. There is no need for apathy at the final hour; despite our challenges and disappointments with the status quo, we must always exercise our franchise and not forfeit our right to determine who leads our nation. Millennials, Generation Z, and women voters will play pivotal roles in the outcome of the election. I implore you to continue practising discernment towards the status quo and demanding more from those in power. The power to challenge the so-called two-party system is in your hands. I pray that we remember that our right to assemble, to participate, and to vote in our democracy is ours and ours alone. Be kind to each other and mobilise safely and wisely in 2021.

BOYKIN G SMITH

Nassau,

January 20, 2021.

Comments

truetruebahamian 1 month, 1 week ago

Analytical study af how and why we have arrived here is necessary. I have been an ardent watcher and have examined all constantly since I was able to hold my own inquest into how the 'masses' are led to believe in the root history of their accumulation through greed or loss of faith in themselves or systems of government and sustaining even those least able to contribute or support themselves or who do not care or have political benefactors. Old families are laid to blame for others misfortunes. Yes - we must help our brothers and sisters - but there are limits. If a woman or a man has a huge load of children inside or outside of their family pack - a Marriage and commitment if you will - they themselves are responsible for the bearing that their mating produces. Others who work hard to do best for their planned family cannot be expected to pay for the unwanted results of inconsiderate mating and their disregard of family values and standards. So - later on the chindren produced are felt ashamed and at fault - they know the conditions of their birth and hold resentment towards those who did a great amount of planning and follow through to do the best for their family - knowing that the best that they could impart to that family would deliver future best results for the entire community and country. We have to consider the actual lives of the unwanted products, but the parents of them are entirely responsible for the products of their lack of thought and action. Yes, we are all animals and have the desire to breed - just as birds, fish, animals of all description, fungus, termites and so much more, but humans have inherited the ability to make intelligent choices, and reasoning and sanity is blatantly available. Use our heads and progress rather than being breeding rats which destroy our world.

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sheeprunner12 1 month, 1 week ago

Simply change the "first past the post" election system to a proportional representative system .........Presently, the PLP & FNM politicians set it up from Day One (1973) for them to benefit and not We The People.

Once a party can obtain 5% of the total votes cast, it should earn a seat in Parliament. If that reformed system fails, then it means that the electorate has NO interest in multi-party politics. Proportional representation is based on the counting of the TOTAL number of ballots, and simply not 50%+1 for each constituency winner. This will change HOW politicians treat their leaders and their constituents .......... and how The People will vote for political parties.

Next, institute recall or byelection of lousy MPs if there is a 50%+1 electors' protest vote (supervised by the Parliamentary Commissioner).

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moncurcool 1 month, 1 week ago

Can someone please list for me the stellar countries around the world that operate a multiparty system beyond the two party that holds the majority?

Please show me the coalition governments that are doing great?

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sheeprunner12 1 month, 1 week ago

Do you think that First past the Post is better??????? ......... If so, how do you account for the FNM having 90% of the HOA seats but only 58% of the popular vote??? .............. Do you think that the FNM deserve 35/39 seats?

What if the FNM had their 23 seats that reflected their popular vote? ......... Do you think that governance would have been better?????

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moncurcool 1 month, 1 week ago

That was not my question. My question is show me just one country where the coalition government of these multiparties are producing a shining example of governance and development.

Now once you can show me that, then we can deal with the first past the post issue.

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Dawes 1 month ago

I believe the most successful is Germany. Most European nations have this, however people may question how well it works.

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moncurcool 1 month ago

@Dawes Very good one. One of the more advanced democracies. It is a good pattern. However are we willing to change our Westminister setup to follow Germany? Further can multi party operate with pour couple thousand people?

We have a problem with getting a referundum passed in this country, would be really interested how willing we would to change our government setup.

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Dawes 1 month ago

I don't like coalition governments, but would prefer where if you don't get 50% of the vote then people are able to put their second choice down until someone gets 50% .

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sheeprunner12 1 month ago

FYI .......... Israel, Tanzania and most EU countries have had ProRep & coalition governments ....... The Majority Rule (1967) Govt was our one and only coalition government .......... Did that work??????????

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