Video: Zane DeSilva Explains Why He Resigned

January 22, 2018

“This principled stand that I’m taking is one based on fairness and justice,” Zane DeSilva said following news that he resigned from Cabinet, adding that he “could not just stand by and watch a black business close, let alone a good friend of mine like Dr. Brown.”

Last night, Premier David Burt confirmed that Mr DeSilva resigned from Cabinet, with the Premier saying Mr DeSilva “expressed the conflict he faces by a set of circumstances this new government inherited; specifically, the decision made by the former government to significantly reduce the fees paid for MRI and CT scans in Bermuda and the new Government’s actions to mitigate the impact of those fee reductions without increasing health insurance costs.”

During our interview with Dr Ewart Brown today, we asked about Mr DeSilva’s resignation, and Dr. Brown said, “His principle was very simple, that he did not want to be in a particular situation, sort of presiding over the closure of his friend’s business. I think he did the honourable thing and withdrew, and I have nothing but respect for what he has done.”

Asked why he resigned from Cabinet, Mr DeSilva told Bernews, “When I was Health Minister previously, my goal was to cut healthcare costs across the spectrum, with regard to health providers, and what they charged for their services during the course of a year. Let me make that clear.

“You will know that, when the OBA were in power, they reduced the CT and MRI services, both at Dr. Brown’s and at the hospital, which was clearly pointed at Dr. Brown, and Dr. Brown only.

“I think had the Bermuda Health Council at the time, and the OBA at the time, had concentrated on doing a cut across the entire healthcare system in Bermuda, I don’t think anybody would have had too many problems.

“But when you have technical officers that come in and advise you, that this should be the level of cuts across the entire spectrum, and the OBA decide to slash that even further, almost crippling, if not crippling Dr. Brown’s business, I have a big issue with that.

“This principled stand that I’m taking is one based on fairness and justice. It reminds me of an old quote, ‘A threat to justice anywhere, is a threat to justice everywhere.’ I just felt that, I could not just stand by and watch a black business close, let alone a good friend of mine like Dr. Brown.

“I think that the problem we inherited was a tough problem. I know that there has been a very fairly decent effort on behalf of the Progressive Labour Party Government to fix this wrong, and Dr. Brown said the other day, it’s a little bit late, but my feeling is that, my hope is that we can continue to work through this as quickly as we can. And save Brown-Darrell Clinic, because it’s not just about where you can get service, because as it’s been stated the hospital have two CT machines.

“But the fact of the matter is, is that business has been there for ten years, and there are many people that have become comfortable with Brown-Darrell Clinic, comfortable with the staff that work there. Once you close that down, it’s a lot of people that do not like the hospital, just the word hospital fears them. That’s another concern, and it’s a shame. My hope is that, we can somewhere rectify the problem, and keep Brown-Darrell open.”

Asked if would consider serving in Cabinet again, he said, “I think I would. I’m here to serve.

“In 2007, when I decided to run for the Progressive Labour Party, my party, there’s no other party that Zane DeSilva will ever run for. The Progressive Labour Party is my party, and I’ll be a part of the Progressive Labour Party, and it’s machinery, and it’s family, for life.”

When asked about who might replace him in Cabinet, Mr DeSilva said, “The Premier has lots of choices. You will know that we won the last election by a 75% margin. He has choices.”

Asked if this is an indication of a split within the party, Mr DeSilva said, “No. Just because we may have some differences of opinion, and let me tell you, the PLP is a very healthy, vibrant party. I think that we’re in really, really good shape. I think that the family we have, and the team we have is going to do Bermuda proud in years to come.”

“All I want us to do, and I think the people of the country want us to do, is try to get things done for our people as quickly as we can.

“We promised that we would put Bermudians first, and it’s going to be a fairer Bermuda, and I think that the Premier has that very much on his mind. I think that as long as we can get things done, as quickly as we can for the people we serve, because I think they expect that from us.”

Mr DeSilva — who will continue to serve as an MP for Southampton East — previously served as Minister of Social Development and Sports, and the Premier confirmed that Minister for the Cabinet Office Lovitta Foggo “will assume the duties of Acting Minister of Social Development and Sports until a new Minister is appointed to the Cabinet.”

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Comments (57)

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  1. Hair says:

    You lot are the same fish in de sea and we need to through you back!!

  2. Oh really says:

    How about the white business that PLP closed. The cement cilo’s have yet to be moved 1r yrs later. Zane please those that live in glass houses should not throw stones. You would defend Mr Brown after all that you gained from him and others. How can you life with yourself…….

    • Onion Juice says:

      You do have a point, but comparing white buisness and how long they had and have historical financial, social and political support is like talking about apples and oranges.
      UBP has had 300 years of scewing de cash cow, for Christ sake give somebody else a turn.

    • Lol says:

      Wow you really had to make up a lie just to have an opinion. Please name these so called white businesses that closed because of the Plp. I’ll wait.

  3. Greg says:

    LOL LOL LOL. I believe you Zane.

  4. Co pay ! says:

    I note Mr DeSilva saying that when he was Health Minister his goal was to cut the cost of health care across the board . Well that may have been his goal but reality paints a very different picture . Health care has sky rocketed along with insurance premiums and co pays are at unprecedented levels. End result is the average Bermudian is now paying a lot more and receiving much less !

  5. Hippocrates says:

    If I am not mistaken, a certain rather large “white” owned medical practice (the Doc in charge and who founded this practice is white as are most of the GPs in the practice) had the same complaint about the OBA health reforms (sic) and for the first time in his life supported the PLP this past election. He stated quite clearly the what the OBA proposed would bankrupt his practice given their investment in equipment. I guess he is feeling a bit hard done by too round about now. Which brings me to the two points I wish to make: Mr. DeSilva (who I usually have the time of day for) is wrong to frame this in a black/white context. First it affects everybody who uses the health system in Bermuda. Second to even remotely suggest that Dr. Brown (in this instance – the Reddy thing is a whole other matter) is being picked on here because he is black is plain ridiculous. The good Doc needs to go down to Alaska Hall and sort this out.

  6. MB says:

    He got 800k of taxpayer money…does he still get the subsidy now that he is closing?
    So his clinic in Smiths that always looks closed anyway was operating based on doing just scans? Why not do them at his office and consolidate?
    Zane was elected to serve the people not friends

    • Hey says:

      If the clinic has been and is receiving govt funds then please provide the public with the latest set of audited accounts of the clinic. Something smells off.

      • Onion says:

        There’s a play at hand. Stay tuned. The chess game has just started, the Good Doctor just moved his pawn.

  7. Bill says:

    Zane for Premier!!

  8. Real Deal says:

    I hope Zane reconsiders ones things blow over a shame to not have a good warrior on the front line where his presence can be felt the most. we need as many strong and honorable hands on deck as possible because of the way the world is so vile today.

  9. Infidelguy says:

    Oh cry me a river!

    You can’t stand by and watch a “black business” close? In the past many of them have failed because of high costs or competition! Where were you then? Do I read into your statement that if this were a “white business” you wouldn’t have a problem? Where were your “principles” and your passion for justice, when in 2008 your pal Dr. Brown, who was then Premier and Transport Minister, allowed larger trucks to operate on our roads over the protests of the smaller truckers who lost a significant amount of business or were put OUT of business as a result?

    And if you’re gonna quote someone, make sure you credit the originator and make sure the wording is accurate.

    “Injustice anywhere is a Threat to Justice everywhere” — Martin Luther King Jr.

    Stop making a mockery of the quotes of great man like Martin Luther King Jr. by applying them in defense a privileged millionaire!!!

    You guys only want to abide by the rules if they favor you politically or economically, otherwise you say they are unjust.

    I’m so sick of this S^#IT!

  10. puzzled says:

    Cookie jars are a beach.
    AG. You watching?

  11. Up D hill says:

    Tell the truth Zane , you were fired!

    • Onion Jiuce says:

      This isn’t the first time in Bermuda, where a Government hasn’t agreed with the Technical Officers. Technical Officers aren’t Messiahs and they are often, simply wrong. Actually there are some really, really bad Technical Officers. Let’s discuss all the other times, that the Technical Officers weren’t abided by!

  12. Teresa says:

    Zane we knew this when you were present at the press conference.Kim Wilson should have been there.Iam disappointed you cannot separate ffriends & business.

  13. campervan says:

    Runaway healthcare costs could very quickly bankrupt the Island. Ageing, shrinking population. Diabetes off the hook. Time to get the surgeons knife out and make some deep cuts or the patient will die.

  14. Warwick West says:

    Fired? Gosh I hope so!

  15. Ok says:

    There goes the PLPs diversity

  16. Spanner breath says:

    Must be more profitable to stick with to doc.

  17. Stevie says:

    Zane loves E..wart. David didn’t like that.

  18. When you say justice and fairness you change their collective meaning…please do not utilise those two words again…you of all people shouldn’t use those words.

  19. Imagine that says:

    Wonder how his voters feel. A leopard don’t change there spots.

  20. Yeah Whatever says:


  21. Hey says:

    Dr Brown was not a poor man.why didn’t you say a rich black man’s business, Never saw a tear from you when the many just getting by black mans business went under.

  22. Lance says:

    Make Bermuda Great Again!!!

  23. De Truth says:

    Its always gonna be the OBA’s fault for years to come!!! Truly sad!!! Its amazing how this is the spin now!!!

  24. Mark says:

    Fairness and justice?!?! Is he kidding?!?! Why are you conflicted now when you were not conflicted as health minister? Wheres the fairness in that? What about the port royal fiasco and the numerous other deals you made money on? Fairness? Justice? Bermuda truly is another world

  25. sandgrownan says:

    No one gives a toss what you think Zane.

  26. Seascape says:

    Who cares?!

    • Onion Jiuce says:

      You should care! The cookie jar is not empty anymore. Bob filled it up again!

  27. Cha says:

    I thought the Brown Darrell clinic was doing stem cell research? Now their sole income is CT scans?

    Bermuda already has the most CT scans per capita than anywhere in the world driving up our healthcare costs. It is unfortunate that a bad business model would cause the business to close but it sounds like the hospital should be adequate plus there is another clinic being built in Hamilton at the moment so there must be some viability.

    It is apparent that this is purely a political move from both Brown and DeSilva. How much of a share in the clinic does Zane have?

    • Onion says:

      Gotta give it to our PLP, they don’t air out their dirty laundry!

    • Real Deal says:

      Do your research and you would see that the Gov did not pass it because they wanted regulation and at the time it was new technology they had no regulation in place because it was new technology.
      and i did not even have to do research because I have my eyes open when things are published about the betterment of Bermuda. I don’t rely on hearsay like it seems you do.

    • Real Deal says:

      A lot of good this came out of stem cell Technology and we missed the boat thanks to UBP

      and that was a chance for medical tourism

      Dispute over Brown’s stem cell project is the head line

  28. Hmm.. oba wanting answers???
    They NEVER answered the Born Bermudian public’s questions as to why they were so nasty.
    All about numbers…. foolishness!!!
    People’s lives were at stake and all oba cared about was numbers.
    P.L.P. must ignore oba demands. They did not respect the great P.L.P.

    • Zevon says:

      If you’re admitting the PLP cant understand numbers, well we already know that.

    • bdaboy says:


      this is pure satire. Brilliant!

  29. Truth is killin' me... says:

    DECREASING COSTS FOR THE PEROPLE IS GOOD! Save the people money…don’t increase their costs! Good move by the Bermuda Health Council. You had a good innings!

  30. wahoo says:

    I feel bad for Zane and doctor brown…..NOT!

    • LOL says:

      I would feel worst if I only had 12 seats. So how does the obaUBP feel? :)

      • wahoo says:

        Like we didn’t waste our vote. We also feel like there is a lot of work to be done so that people do not get fooled into voting for plp/ubp again. We are also concerned that the plp/ubp are easily lead by persons external. How you doin’?

  31. George says:

    Just an FYI – Bermuda Healthcare Services, the other health care company in the middle of this storm in a tea cup is also owned by Dr. Brown! So lets put things into perspective here. How is it one of Dr. Brown’s companies is able to deal with the reduction in fees yet the other is not?

  32. facts of the rock says:

    oh dear,hit a nerve hmmmm!

  33. Alicia says:

    He definitely has a conflict. Zane is listed on the company registry with dr ewart brown for the Bermuda life center (the new dialysis center) as per the government website. Zane is now profiting directly off of the healthcare usage and need some of bermudians.

    • Spanner breath says:

      It’s a wonder he’s complaining about cost! He’s not making as much now.
      Wonder what responses you’ll get for that post?

  34. whip lash says:

    Whachu mean there aint no golf courses or nothing to redo!! Bie um outta her.

  35. Navin Johnson says:

    The whole thing is a joke