DNA Seek All Bahamian Votes
For Immediate Release
February 29, 2012
Wednesday’s headline by the Tribune, “Now DNA Seeks Haitian Votes” is very misleading to the Bahamian public, as it suggests an erroneous statement that the Party is underhandedly courting “the Haitian vote.” It would be wise to note that Haitians can only vote in Haiti. Bahamians vote in the Bahamas.
The Democratic National Alliance (DNA), with no other political party present, met with some Bahamian leaders of Haitian descent recently and we discussed the DNA’s policy on immigration, which was not altered from what was presented last year at a public DNA town meeting on immigration, on the Party’s website (www.mydnaparty.org) or as was presented recently at the DNA’s People’s Summit 2012.
It was a fruitful meeting and the DNA believes that it successfully explained to all in attendance that a DNA-government intends to adhere to the law, present a referendum to modernize the country’s regularization laws and remove political hindrances and corruption from the Department of Immigration. At no time did the meeting transform into a plea for votes. Our only focus was to reiterate to the group that the DNA would enforce the laws of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. In addition to:
- Use the most sophisticated technology to ensure that our borders are effectively patrolled.
- Bring the vexing illegal immigration problem in The Bahamas under control through intergovernmental cooperation and in accordance with international Human Rights Laws.
- Review the status of immigrants that have been in The Bahamas for long periods of time and are productive members of society with a view to regularization in accordance with current laws.
- Move with haste to consider the applications of persons entitled to apply for residency/citizenship.
- Move to regularize the status of children born abroad to Bahamian women by way for referendum.
We stand by our decision to denounce President Michel Martelly’s comments during his visit to the Bahamas as divisive and explosive, mainly because all voters are Bahamians and therefore their interests should reflect this country and not that of another. Further, the Free National Movement (FNM) should not have allowed President Martelly to make a state visit to the Bahamas during this charged political season. We feel that his visit was an election ploy engineered by Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham and the FNM, which backfired.
The DNA recognizes the vast contribution that Bahamians of Haitian origin continue to make to the Bahamian economy. We will work hand in hand with all Bahamians, no matter their origin, but we believe that a government has the unassailable responsibility to enforce the laws of the country.