Following the May 2 General Elections, the Leader of the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) was sworn in as Prime Minister on Friday, May 3.
The Hon. Perry G. Christie is the third Prime Minister of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas since Independence in 1973.
With 29 of the 40 seats in the House of Assembly, the Progressive Liberal Party captured roughly 52% of the popular vote, unseating the Free National Movement (FNM) government. The FNM won 7 seats, representing about 41% of the popular vote, with the remaining 4 of the 40 seats going to independent candidates.
*”Integrity, competence, devotion to service and to duty – these will be the watchwords of my administration. This I pledge to you this afternoon with a sincere and honest heart,”* said the new Prime Minister at swearing in ceremonies held at Government House.
On Monday, May 6, former Ambassador of Trade, James Smith, was sworn in as Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance, with special responsibility for day-to-day fiscal affairs, budgetary planning and the financial services industry. Mr. Smith, also a former Central Bank Governor, will be appointed to the Senate. He has served as Permanent Secretary and Secretary for Revenue in the Ministry of Finance, and also as an Alternate Governor for The Bahamas with the International Monetary Fund.
Prime Minister Christie, who will serve as Minister of Finance, said Mr. Smith’s appointment sends the strongest possible signal to the banking and business community, and to foreign investors, on his government’s commitment to working in a spirit of partnership to spur economic growth and responsible management of fiscal resources.
Former Attorney General Sean McWeeney, a close advisor to the Prime Minister, heads the Transition Team for the new Government.
Prime Minister Christie has reported that over the next several days he will be preoccupied with the selection of the Cabinet, Parliamentary Secretaries and Senators, and with the transition to a new government. Indications were that he will be holding discussions with his Members of Parliament-elect over the coming days to settle the substantive ministerial positions in the new government.