Chairman Says PLP Fully Behind Stubbs
Despite his legal troubles, Holy Cross Member of Parliament Sidney Stubbs still has the full support of the Progressive Liberal Party, PLP Chairman Raynard Rigby said Wednesday.
“Mr. Stubbs lodged his appeal, the matter is still before the courts and so he is still entitled to due process under the constitution,” Mr. Rigby said.
He added that talk of a possible bye-election is premature because Mr. Stubbs has not yet exhausted the time provided under the constitution for him to have his bankruptcy order discharged.
Although Mr. Stubbs has said he has repaid the debt that led to Supreme Court Justice Jeannie Thompson declaring him bankrupt nearly four months ago, he still has to have the order reversed before he can participate in proceedings of the House of Assembly.
His time would expire around the same time that the House comes off its summer recess in late September.
“Our support is in line with the protection given to him under the constitution,” Mr. Rigby told the Bahama Journal.
“I’ve spoken with his attorneys and I have been advised that he still has a number of options available to him and they are exploring those options with a view to bringing the matter to an end.
“If they are successful in their options then obviously there would not be a bye-election in Holy Cross.”
However, Mr. Rigby said earlier in the week that should a bye-election be called, his party would undoubtedly be victorious.
But Free National Movement supporters say this would be unlikely.
“Having been lost or hiding himself from the many embarrassing moments of his embattled colleague and party, Mr. Rigby appears to have lost touch with reality as to what is going on in New Providence and The Bahamas at this time,” read a statement from the Action Group of The FNM issued Tuesday.
“In its current state of unacceptability, the PLP would be hard-pressed to win a seat in a bye-election or any kind of election in New Providence or elsewhere in The Bahamas.”
Sources within the PLP, meanwhile, have told the Journal that thought is already being given to who the PLP would run should a bye-election be called, with some speculating whether this would be an ideal time for CDR leader Dr. Bernard Nottage to accept what amounted to an invitation from Prime Minister Perry Christie for him to rejoin the PLP.
Last week, Mr. Christie told the Journal, “Everyone knows that I have a great deal of personal affection and a great deal of political admiration for Dr. Nottage and most certainly look forward to the time when a process can be engaged in - if that is the wish of Dr Nottage - towards his becoming a full fledged member again of the Progressive Liberal Party. I believe that is where he ought to be.”
For now, PLP officials are saying on the record that they are hopeful that Mr. Stubbs would once again take his place on the backbench when Members of Parliament return from their summer recess in September.