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Q- What is required for the Bahamas to adopt a more modern system of governance?

Modern Governance depends on the ongoing involvement of civil society, citizens and officials must see good governance not only as an ideal, but also as improving their own lives and the quality of life and the environment around them. A government that does not include the voice of its entire people is not the people’s government. No matter how diverse, contrasting viewpoints are healthy and add to the debate on what direction a country should head. Good leadership is the steward to the process and not the master. A government that does not respect and work with Civil Society on an ongoing basis has no place in modern governance.

robert_myers.jpgRobert Myers is the Chairman and co-founder of the Organization for Responsible Governance (ORG) and one of its founding members. Mr. Myers is a shareholder and director in a number of Bahamian-owned and operated businesses that come under the umbrella of Caribbean Group, where he serves as president. Former chairman of the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce & Employers Confederation, he was also the founder and Co-Chairman of the Coalition for Responsible Taxation that negotiated VAT taxes down from a proposed 15 per cent to 7.5 per cent and eliminated almost all exemptions.

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Q- How does Economic Development relate to Good Governance?

Good governance requires dynamic planning that constantly considers key economic factors and a good working knowledge of their application. As economies are ever changing due to local, regional and global conditions, good fiscal and economic governance requires reaction and adaptation to maintain economic control. Without good fiscal and economic knowledge, policy and practices as well as the ability to monitor and react and or adapt quickly, a nation’s economy will suffer, as will the opportunity available to its people. If left unchecked or uncorrected the likely symptoms are increased crime, higher unemployment, lower wage growth, lower consumer confidence, poor business confidence, less foreign direct investment, lower productivity and poor morale to name but a few.

 

Dionisio-DAguilar.jpgDionisio D’Aguilar has been president and chief executive of Superwash Limited in The Bahamas for nearly 23 years. Superwash operates the largest chain of self-service laundries in the country. Previously, he was director of Baha Mar a $3 million mega resort under construction in Nassau, and previously director of J.S. Johnson and Company Ltd., the largest firm of insurance brokers and agents in The Bahamas.

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Q- What role does under education play in Governance?

As a population becomes less educated, so does the level of candidate available for election within government. This leads to a significant risk of persons seeking nomination and election to government as a means of employ instead of serving one's country. The needs of the nation are put behind the needs of the political party and or the elected. Nepotism, cronyism and corruption then ensue.

An educated society is essential to the process of selecting and providing good governance within any successful nation, and so it must be made abundantly clear to all citizens that the nation’s BGCSE grade point average is a clear indication of any governments desire to move the nation forward. If any political party is not seriously examining, analyzing and determining tangible and actionable ways to seriously improve the education system (not maintain the status quo D or D- BGCSE GPA) over the short, medium and long-term then they have no place in today’s governance. Opportunity and success will not avail themselves to an ignorant and or undereducated Bahamian people.

Lana_Lee_Broghdon.jpgLana Lee-Brogdon is president of New Oriental Laundry and Cleaners Ltd., a family-owned business now in its 55th year, and also owns and operates Wok N Roll Chinese Restaurant and Bar on Cable Beach. She is a co-founder of the Organization for Responsible Governance (ORG) and is currently serving her third year as a Director on the Board of the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce & Employers Confederation. She was also the Public Relations Director for the Coalition for Responsible Taxation.

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