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A Closer Look At The FNM’s Leadership Race

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – The Free National Movement is back at the point of another leadership race. The two will again go head to head for the top post. So how did they get here?

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NASSAU, BAHAMAS – The Free National Movement is back at the point of another leadership race. The two will again go head to head for the top post. So how did they get here?

Former Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis was first elected as MP for Killarney in 2007 under former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham. He was appointed minister of health.

After the FNM’s 2012 general election and Ingraham’s resignation, it opened the door for him to become leader. Dr. Minnis was then challenged by Long Island MP Loretta Butler-Turner at the 2014 convention and emerged victorious.

During that convention, Michael Pintard was elected party chairman. But with only nine members in his delegation, Dr. Minnis had a rocky road ahead. His leadership was seen as weak, eventually ending in a successful attempt to overthrow him as opposition leader.

Days later, Butler-Turner was sworn in as leader of the official opposition. At the time, Minnis called it an abuse of the party’s democratic process by the blind, greedy, and selfish ambition of a few members of parliament.

This brought the party to another convention in 2016, where Minnis again left as leader of the FNM. He made this plea for unity:

With a completely new slate of candidates, Dr. Minnis led the Free National Movement to an election victory in 2017, snagging 35 of the 39 House seats. Among them was Michael Pintard, who served in the Minnis-led cabinet. But the Minnis administration would quickly descend from the election high as his government was rocked by multiple resignations.

An early election in 2021 led to a crushing defeat for the FNM under Minnis’s leadership. The only MPs surviving the election were Dr. Minnis, Michael Pintard, Shanendon Cartwright, Adrian Gibson, Adrian White, Iram Lewis, and Kwasi Thompson.

At the party’s next convention, Dr. Minnis lost the race for leader. But Pintard soon found out that the road to healing wasn’t easy. He too faced a party faction still loyal to Dr. Minnis.

Three years later, another political “clash of the titans,” which Pintard feels confident will end in a unified party.

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