By Ianthia Smith
The Bahama Journal
Pastor of Bahamas Harvest Church Mario Moxey in a press release issued Thursday said it is common knowledge that many of these web shops facilitate the illegal playing of numbers with their owners being an organised group of web shop bosses “who covertly engage in the illegal numbers racket.”
“The We Care group, though holding themselves out as legitimate entrepreneurs, has in my humble opinion during recent news coverage, directly implicated themselves when identifying the true nature of their business, illegal gambling,” the release said.
“Clearly, they do not care and are not genuinely concerned with the development of our country as they claim to be; they are nothing more than organised crime bosses seeking to legitimise their ill-gotten gains.”
Pastor Moxey added that the idea of “organised crime bosses” meeting with Christian leaders to discuss the possibility of legitimising an “immoral behavior” is repulsive, reprehensible and offensive to many Christians in the country.
“The Bahamas Christian Council’s unified position has been clearly and unequivocally articulated by President Dr. Randolph Patterson: the Christian Council vehemently opposes gambling in The Bahamas,” he added.
“This position is consistent with the views of almost every major mainline denominational leader. Who then are these 20 prominent local church leaders who drank the Kool-Aid prepared by Dr. Phillip McPhee?”
The Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Government has promised a referendum on the thorny issue by year’s end.
Recently, a number of pastors have had talks with We Care, the group representing web shop owners, in a bid to better understand their position and intentions for the country.
However, the move has apparently caused some ruckus within the religious sector.
“Their claim to have contributed $1 million to fund various organisations and sponsor community programmes, do not, in any form or fashion, justify or make more noble or legitimise the unsavory activities of these organised crime bosses, who are alleged to have made hundreds of millions of dollars off the backs of Bahamians,” Pastor Moxey continued.
“No more so can we rationalise, justify or legitimise the criminal activities of men such as Pablo Emilio Escobar, the boss of the Medellín crime family, who although responsible for the construction of many hospitals, schools, churches and football fields in Columbia, is credited with the murder of many innocent people and the destruction of millions of lives and families. No amount of money that these organised crime bosses say they invest for the benefit of our people can turn their evil to good, or erase the stench of their guilt, or their contribution to the deterioration of the moral foundation and conscience and the corruption of our society.”
He said it is very pretentious that these “unscrupulous organised crime bosses act as though they are interested in the betterment of our society, bragging about the money they have contributed while all along “raping us of our moral virtue and perpetuating criminal activity.”
“They are criminals, plain and simple,” he said. “And should not be applauded for attempting to bribe our society; instead, they should be arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. How dare they openly expose themselves without respect for the rule of law or remorse for the crime they have committed against society?”
“I pray that they would all repent and ask God to forgive them for their sins. I challenge them to depart from evil and do good, and in true repentance and an act of generosity, if that’s what they are really all about, turn over all of their ill-gotten earnings to the government of The Bahamas to be used for the benefit of our people and our country’s national development.”
13 July 2012