In response to Minister Wayne Furbert’s recent claim that the media, online commenters and the Opposition “spit on Bermuda”, UBP MP Kim Swan said that the Minister – who he noted is a former Opposition Leader – should understand that the PLP’s record on tourism “will and should come in for heavy criticism.”
Last night Minister Furbert said that the OBA, the media and the anonymous commenters on websites “spit upon Bermuda at every opportunity” which is hurting our competitiveness.
Mr Swan said “Whilst there is no information to confirm or deny the Minister Hon. Wayne Furbert’s assertion – ‘that online comments are hurting Bermuda’s competitiveness’ – we do know that an inordinate amount of energy is wasted locally on the politics of tourism.
“Criticism of the PLP’s tenure on the eve of an election is to be expected; one need only reflect on the barrage of criticism that was heaped on the UBP prior to 1998 election – well orchestrated by Hon. Alex Scott and others – that ushered in their 3 term reign now rightfully called into question.
“On the Tourism front the Minister Hon. Wayne Furbert was handed a mandate by his Tourism Board but failed to embrace a Tourism Authority that would have empowered private industry; that failure simply guaranteed that Bermuda continues to operate the same way as before expecting a different result.”
“There is great irony in the Ministers concern expressed, for had he followed on an industry driven Tourism Authority as recommended by his own Tourism Board, he would have taken a giant step towards removing the politics out of tourism. ”
“For the record, the United Bermuda Party continues to support a Tourism Authority which would address the Minister’s concern by truly empowering the private sector to find the solutions for this all important industry and take it out of the political firing line.”
“The reality is that Bermuda is in election mode and Tourism is an area where the PLP Government has failed Bermuda miserably for 14 years.”
“Just because we have another hard working, energetic Tourism Minister who now chooses to embrace many of the UBP recommendations the PLP ignored, still doesn’t exempt the PLP Government from being put under the political microscope on Tourism. ”
“Minister Hon. Wayne Furbert of all people – as a former Opposition Leader – should understand and expect that the PLP’s record on tourism will and should come in for heavy criticism.”
“You only need to look at how the Town of St. George has suffered – Now Needing So Much More – to see that the government still needs to taken to task on Tourism.”
” Personally, I will continue to take the government to task publicly but pledge to do so by making a concerted effort to be respectful and to offer solutions as well,” concluded Mr Swan.
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