The death of the late Hon. Obie Wilchcombe has caused the need for a by-election to fill the West Grand Bahama and Bimini seat. As potential candidates vie to become the standard bearers for their respective political parties or contest the seat as independents, a sound bite has emerged of the late Member of Parliament giving his views on how candidates should be selected.
Wilchcombe can be heard saying, “how are we going to choose our candidates? And who’s gonna choose those candidate? And what are we looking for in the candidate? And how do we know that person, not because you like ’em, is a great candidate?”
Wilchcombe also recounted how he became the PLP’s candidate for the area when he first ran for office saying there were three run offs. He continued, “and so why aren’t we allowing the people then to make the decision. Everybody shows up and says I want to be the candidate. And everybody would do some bootlicking to be the candidate. Are the gonna be a good candidate?”
The late Member of Parliament also said, “what is their characteristics? What did they do before they tried to be a candidate? Tell me about their service to country. Tell me about what they did. Did they just simply come out of law school or come out of med school or come out of the accounting field and say I want to be a candidate.”
The voice recording the was circulated on social media concluded with Wilchcombe saying, “the great Sir Lynden Pindling use to say that you can always see somebody teeth but you can’t ever see their heart. It’s the heart, that’s why you end up with the Clarence Bains and the Clifford Darlings. If you were asking them to be college graduates, they were not. What they were though were people who cared about people.”
Wilchcombe was recorded while speaking to a crowd in 2021.