The former Member of Parliament for Pineridge is voicing his concerns on the future of Freeport. He says he is against the government acquiring and selling the Grand Bahama Port Authority to a local company.
Frederick McAlpine told ZNS News, “Grand Bahama needs an infusion of economic endowment. We need vision. We need new, innovative ideas to come forth from the Port Authority. And we might even need to change some of our shareholders. At the end of the day there are those who have the view that there are shareholders only collecting. At the end of the day while they’re collecting we here on the island are hurting.”
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Public Service and National Chairman of the Progressive Liberal Party responded to McAlpine’s statements. The Hon. Fred Mitchell said in a released social media voice note, “first, politics is not a cesspool. Secondly, its only politics, Mr. MP McAlpine, that can find the solution to the problems of Freeport. You should join us not fight us. But whether you come with the PLP in moving ahead to fix the Freeport problems in Grand Bahama or not we are going ahead.”
Mitchell added, “we have a problem today, Freeport and Grand Bahama are dying on the vine. It has been steadily downhill with the owners of the city, or at least their heirs to the owner of the city, very much seeing it only as a play thing and not as a place of real live people. A real place where people live, breathe and have their being. The owners of the city have sold off assets, failed in their commitments to bring fresh investment, failed in their obligations to bring essential infrastructure and build in the city and it points only to one direction to solve it. New investment must be found, only the government can do so.
The Grand Bahama Port Authority is the governing body of the city of Freeport since the signing of the Hawksbill Creek Agreement in 1955.