Marco City MP Michael Pintard formally joined the three-way race to contest for party leader of the Free National Movement, betting that his ability to rebuild, reconnect and reignite can restore confidence in the party after its loss at the polls.
Unlike the other candidates, Central Grand Bahama MP Iram Lewis and East Grand Bahama MP Kwasi Thompson, who offered themselves for the leadership post, Pintard launched at the British Colonial Hilton with a crowded room of supporters.
He promised, “I will work daily to ensure that I am not a liability to you. And unlike so many before, anytime I believe that there is a better option, I have no fantasies about holding any particular position. I welcome better options to serve the people that I love.
“Whatever assignment God has for me to do, I will do it. Just tonight, I believe it is this assignment. I ask for your vote.”
Here are 5 takeaways from the launch:
- The FNM needs leadership that empathizes and listens to people. It must begin the work to transform lives now, touching them now and not waiting until the general election.
- Leadership needs to handle differences in opinion. In the past, some people’s opinions were not heard, even though they should have been heard. “I want to be the kind of leader that wants the best ideas,” he said.
- Pintard is seeking to join camps. The party seems divided with supporters of past leaders–Sir Cecil Wallace-Whitfield, Kendal Isaacs, Hubert Ingraham, Tommy Turnquest and Hubert Minnis. However, Pintard wants unity. He said, “Let’s embrace the new without alienating the veterans. We must coexist.” Speaking directly to all party supporters, he said, “The party needs you. We need you. You are a part of the family.”
- He wants to build a country that appreciates talents and hard work, and move away from political polarization.
- Pintard says he is fearless and called on party members to stand for and with other FNMs who may be victimized.
The party leader will be elected on November 27 in a one-day convention, replacing Dr Hubert Minnis.