Audio: OBA Leader Questions Premier On Airport

July 18, 2018 | 39 Comments

The contract “had in the unspeakable terms that it was unable to be varied,” Premier and Minister of Finance David Burt told the House of Assembly as he was answering questions about the airport deal during the ‘Premier’s Question Period‘ on Friday.

Opposition Leader Jeanne Atherden asked the Premier, “Will the Premier advise the Honourable House of the status of the better deal that he promised to the people of Bermuda in advance of the 2017 general election in respect to the construction of the airport, and could he specify which terms and conditions were improved upon?”

A recent aerial image showing the progress so far on the new airport terminal:

new airport project bermuda generic july 2018 34r34

In response, the Premier said, “I want to thank the Honourable Opposition Leader for her question. What I would say is that the Honourable Opposition Leader I’m sure was paying attention when we gave a press conference on the report where we rolled out about 19 binders full of a contract that had in the unspeakable terms that it was unable to be varied.

“Now every single other contract has ability to be varied, but not this one Mr. Speaker. So, given that that member was a member of the cabinet that approved a contract that cannot be altered, I’m sure that she could tell us how the people of this country can get that better deal.”

Ms Atherden asked, “Will the Premier accept that he has misled the public either through ignorance and intentional deception…with respect to the terms and agreement of this contract? Because as the Premier indicated, once he got in and looked into it, he recognized that it wasn’t what he understood. So, he either didn’t realize what was there or he misled the country.”

4 minute audio extract with the Premier answering questions about the airport deal:

Premier Burt replied, “I find it incredibly rich that a member of the former Cabinet who came to Parliament I believe at 5:00am, who did not provide 19 binders full of documents, would say that I misled the people by saying before the election that will be looking to change a deal that they wrote, that could not be changed.

“Again, that was what they locked the country into, Mr. Speaker. They locked the country into ever-increasing air rates. They locked the country into giving away our revenue. They locked the country into the fact that a Canadian company is getting revenue that should be going to our students and to our seniors, Mr. Speaker. That was their deal, but we are going to continue the work despite what they left us.”

Ms Atherden added, “Since we’ve had the release of so much information, the 19 binders etc, what I want to know, is the Premier prepared to release the un-redacted version of the PPP partnership for the Bermuda Hospitals Board that he promised that he would do?”

The Premier replied, “Mr. Speaker I will let the Honourable Opposition Leader know that I do not remember the specific reference of what she said. But if she has said I have made a commitment, I’m happy to keep that commitment and I will be happy to do so Mr. Speaker.”

32-minute audio of the full Premier’s Question Period:

The full audio of the Premier’s Question Period [PQP] is above, and we will post additional extracts and transcriptions as able, and if you have a specific portion you want to see posted as an extract please feel free to leave a comment or send us an email.

The PQP is set to take place every second Friday of each month that the House is in session for a time period of thirty minutes, with the Leader of the Opposition allocated three questions, and other Members can each ask one question, and two supplemental questions.

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Comments (39)

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  1. John says:

    Yawwwnnnnnnn.

    Airport deal is not a GREAT deal but proven by multiple reports sponsored by both OBA and PLP that it is not a BAD deal given the circumstances.

    NEXT

    • Real says:

      Why is the oba aka UBP experiment broken before the 4 year term in?

      Why have so many of my people departed from the UBP black and white over the years?

      Why are you losing members even now?

      You can’t fix or advise the PLP until you fix your own HOUSE!!!!!!!!

      You continue to lose the voters you have to be blind not to realize something is wrong with the OBA!!!

      • HELLO OBAERS says:

        The OBAers are falling deeper into a poor political party….did they learn anything from the election…Give it up…stop taking advice from your political advisor Dunkley…he never won an election in his life….get over it NOW

        Continue to work hard for the People PLP….ignore the empty noise from those UBPersOBAers

        • John says:

          If you are a progressive party why are you still talking about the past and not boasting about all the wonderful things the PLP have done since taking office? Like you said OBA is out, now tell me something progressive.

          • Pee l pee says:

            The plp is anything but progressive.

            Why do politicians want to remove rights from some people?

            you got your rights, so screw everyone else? Basically, you’re no better than the people you hate so much.

            • Pee N Wee On He says:

              Whoa dude – STOP with the fake news. We don’t Hate! We Appreciate! There you go trying reversed psychology. Boi oh boi again the OBA spin cycle in action.

        • Ortega says:

          You forgot to shout out 25/11…

          • Manuel says:

            No we didn’t because we do not have to…..you all are the one fixated on our victory

      • John says:

        Real, see comments below. I’ll wait for your response.

        Why is the oba aka UBP experiment broken before the 4 year term in?
        — Can you please elaborate? Need specifics on what experiment and what parts. No blanket statements like “all of it”, unless thats as detailed as you can be.

        Why have so many of my people departed from the UBP black and white over the years?
        — You will have to ask them but looks like some retired from politics and others got better job offers.

        Why are you losing members even now?
        — Who is you? Do you have supporting evidence that “you” is loosing members or is that an opinion.

        You can’t fix or advise the PLP until you fix your own HOUSE!!!!!!!!
        — What has “you” advised? I only saw a statement in the post. Please be specific.

        You continue to lose the voters you have to be blind not to realize something is wrong with the OBA!!!
        — Again, who is “you”? Also, where does it say nothing is wrong with the OBA? I actually agree with that statement.

        • Point proven says:

          Guess your point was proven. Real is just a noise maker with zero substance like 99% of PLP supporters.

        • Pursuit Twin says:

          Do you realize what happened last election? Many black voters have over the years stopped supporting the UBP and now the same team renamed OBA. I clearly understand what the blogger is pointing out. These are facts not fake news. I used to support both UBP and later OBA. I tried my best to remain focus and not listen to the haters, but when you clearly see some being used for one purpose it’s time to move on. Speak to the OBA’s Sylvan Richards and Leah Scott these 2 are in touch with the black Bermudian voters and clearly understand why blacks yes blacks have departed.

          • Hh says:

            Many voters got swept up in the hype, emotional divisiveness of the PLP media blitz. Marching against the airport deal, blocking parliament. Crazy stuff. now the PLP after having another independent review come back and find that the airport deal is a good one. People got suckered by the PLP hype.

            Now people want the substance, and there is none. Cost of living increases and increased travel spending by ministers is what they have delivered.

    • Jean says:

      GREAT JOB PREMIER.

      Don’t mind thes HATERS!

    • Jean says:

      John you do know you have a choice right?

    • Jean says:

      Great Job Burt

  2. Merrick says:

    We might get an alright cookie cutter airport – maybe – but Premier Burt is absolutely right on this one – what kind of arrogant idiot gives away thirty years of revenue from one of the few profitable Government departments? The same sort that doubles the borrowing and then raises taxes on already stretched businesses, I suppose. THIS AIRPORT IS A TERRIBLE DEAL FOR BERMUDA. HEAR THAT OBA. THAT’S WHY YOU ARE WHERE YOU ARE.

    • answer says:

      You miss the point. Burt said he could and would renegotiate the contract. He either misled us, or he doesn’t understand what the word ‘contract’ means. Or, maybe, he just was prepared to say and do anything if it helped win an election.

      • Got it says:

        He gets it! What he is saying is who in their right mind gives away 2 generations of income to an overseas operator?

        Well I guess it’s those morons in the OBA because they are doing the same with gaming! Giving our money away to overseas operators!

        And did anyone do any checking into the gaming and airport overseas vendors? No!!!

        • sandgrownan says:

          That’s actually factually incorrect and easily disproven. If you repeat a PLP lie often enough, it still doesn’t make it true.

          What DaveBitCoin needs to do is stop being in campaign/election mode and start looking forward. The fact he cannot do that indicates there’s nothing between his ears.

          • Sandz Not Growin' says:

            Sandz thinks if he comments more he can gain followers. FACTUALLY WRONG!!!

        • Hotbegumby says:

          Gave away the costs of running the airport for the same number of years and the cost of building a needed replacement terminal too.

        • Jus' Wonderin' says:

          “And did anyone do any checking into the gaming and airport overseas vendors? No!!!”

          Yeah they just were relaxing by d pool one day and was like ya that company looks cool, i like there logo, maybe I’ll pick them. ya a str8 dummy bra lmfaoooooo. no wonder we can’t move on as an island!

        • Archie says:

          Who makes the taxpayer pay for decades for a hospital WING?

      • question says:

        Or maybe you are to ignorant to understand what’s involved in cancelling government contracts love.

    • Anbu says:

      How so? All he had to do was answer the question. He himself said he would find a better deal. Promised us in fact. Why cant he just answer the question. His mentor taught him well i guess. Do what u have to to win and deflect all shortcomings thereafter. No surprise.

      • An Who says:

        Anbu-bu, I know you are challenged when it comes to comprehending so I’all say this to you as the child you are. Once in his possession (the contract), the realisation that the OBA mucked this up left him with NO OTHER CHOICE!!!! There you go love.

    • Kevin says:

      How narrow minded can you be Merrick, another one believing that the airport was a money making machine…you believe anything that your party tells you and you do. One must associate all of the costs for operating that airport not cherry pick what you wish. Reality is straight we need a new airport and this is a great deal …because if your party didn’t lose 800 million and make deals that cost us 300 million more we would have been able to build it ourselves. So put that in your peace pipe and smoke it
      Reality is a B#tch isn’t it
      …. I didn’t vote for them

  3. Joe Bloggs says:

    “Mr. Speaker I will let the Honourable Opposition Leader know that I do not remember the specific reference of what she said. But if she has said I have made a commitment, I’m happy to keep that commitment and I will be happy to do so Mr. Speaker.”

    I remember it.

    • Joe Bloggs Brother says:

      I course you do Joe B: cause you would turn every stone to prove the PLP wrong rather than acknowledge the fact the OBA effed Bermuda and Bermudians with this deal!!!!!!

      • Jus' Wonderin' says:

        so all d fact checkers and companies who said it was a good deal was lying? non biased ones too… where else would guys get d money to pay for a airport ?

  4. swing voter says:

    “what kind of arrogant idiot gives away thirty years of revenue ” but how do you feel about ACW…same deal under a different government…don’t be silly bie

  5. Ortega says:

    The airport PPP seems to essentially be the same type of arrangement that the PLP entered into with Saturn Solar from what I can tell, but there doesn’t seem to be any complaints or outrage in respect of that deal.

    If anyone has the requisite knowledge and time, would they be able to provide a high level overview of the differences?

  6. Stormy daniels says:

    How many years is coco reefs lease?

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      That (like the hospital) is different. It was PLP approved!

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