Monday: New Opposition Leader To Be Sworn In

September 21, 2018

[Updated] The One Bermuda Alliance continue to have internal discussions over their leadership, with eight of their eleven elected MPs having declared ‘no confidence’ in Jeanne Atherden, with the MPs understood to be aiming to have Craig Cannonier serve as the Party Leader.

Jeanne Atherden Craig Cannonier Bermuda TC

According to unofficial information, eight of the eleven elected OBA MPs held a meeting and expressed ‘no confidence’ in Ms Atherden’s leadership earlier this week.

A meeting was held in relation to the matter on Wednesday night, and while rumours swirled that Ms Atherden had been removed and Mr Cannonier assumed the leadership position at that time, there is actually a more complex process to changing leaders than just passing a motion of no confidence.

Changing leaders is a two step process; Ms Atherden has to either resign or be removed as per the procedure detailed in the OBA Constitution, and then the process to have a new leader can get underway.

Unofficial information suggests there was movement on the first step, with suggestions that Ms Atherden resigned last night, and the party is now moving to the process of installing a new leader.

OBA Constitution 1 leadership election

Another point to consider, is that the OBA Leader and Opposition Leader are not, technically speaking, exactly the same thing, as the OBA leader is selected by the party, while the Opposition Leader is officially appointed by the Governor, and it is technically possible to have different people serve as Opposition Leader and OBA Leader.

In order to be officially sworn in as the new Opposition Leader; it must be done in line with the Bermuda Constitution, which states that the “Governor shall appoint as the Opposition Leader— the member of the House of Assembly who, in the opinion of the Governor, is the leader in that House of any opposition party whose numerical strength in that House is greater than that of any other opposition party.”

There is, of course, no other opposition party in Bermuda at this time, so in effect, the Governor appoints the MP who is the leader of the OBA as the Opposition Leader.

Government House has not yet responded to request for comment, however unofficial information suggests that Government House wishes to ensure the relevant OBA leadership procedures are followed before swearing in a new Opposition Leader.


Mr Cannonier previously served as OBA Leader, became Premier after the OBA won the 2012 election, and stepped down as Premier amidst the ‘JetGate’ matter.

He stood for leader in the OBA’s internal elections last year, earning 28.6% of the vote, as compared to Patricia Gordon-Pamplin’s 34%, and Jeanne Atherden’s winning percentage of 37.3%.

There has not yet been any form of official statement made by either the party or the MPs, however unofficial information continues to suggest Mr Cannonier is likely to take the leadership position.

Update 12.55pm: It is unofficially understood that Ms Atherden resigned last night, and Mr Cannonier is to be sworn in as the new Opposition Leader on Monday, and unofficial information suggests that Deputy Leader Leah Scott will be the Acting Leader in the meantime.

Update 2.04pm: PLP Chairman Owen Darrell said, “The Progressive Labour Party thanks Jeanne Atherden for her service as Opposition Leader.

“As the members of the OBA continue to sort out their affairs, we, in the PLP, will stay focused on the work we were elected to complete; putting Bermudians first by restoring confidence in public education, creating jobs, diversifying our economy, and making Bermuda more fair for the people of Bermuda.”

Update 2.14pm: Ms Atherden has now officially confirmed, via an email to OBA members, that she has resigned.

Message from Jeanne AtherdeN Resign Sept 21 2018

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Comments (21)

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  1. Arguments!!! Upset people..attitudes, anger…
    It is what it is!

  2. KBB says:

    Lord have mercy.

  3. Community First says:

    How about Mr. John Barritt as an elder statesman capable of steering the ship towards what Bermuda needs now – not simply what each politician can personally gain?

    We continue to call it Party Politics and it is not much of a Party – it is a constant food fight between differing aspiration.

  4. Piece of the Rock says:

    I never understood what the point was with “Jetgate.” Thy accepted a free ride rather than spend tax payers’ money. I am sure that a ride on a private jet was not the highlight of any of their lives.

    • Onion Juice says:

      Political officials hitched a ride on a jet which belonged to an alleged prospect for an assumingly favour, a civilian was present whom was Cannonaier’s business manager, and stories were conflicted on who and how many were on the plane and was it for Government business.
      But you crucified Dr.Brown for alleged stolen beams.
      Gotta love it.
      Get the point now?

      • Oooohh says:

        Lol couldn’t have said it better…

      • Toodle-oo says:

        But there was NO quid pro . Get the point now ?

        And you really need to talk to someone in the know about them cedar beams and also materials involved in the construction of the BI
        Gotta love it !

        • Onion Juice says:

          I dont think that would compare to de Somers Isles and Virginia Company/ Forty thieves UBP days.

        • Navin Johnson says:

          They got caught before any quid pro quo….with 2 lawyers on the flight (Crockwell and Pettingill) Jetgate should never have happened….nothing matters now though as after Fahy,Dunkley and Atherton there is no opposition…..stick a fork in them….

      • question says:

        What was the quid pro quo for the $400,000 a year paid by Lahey?

        • Onion Juice says:

          OBA are finished, the only way they will have a chance is PLP will have to self destruct.
          But all the Boogie man tactics dont work no more, we saw your true colors and you blew it.
          ITS OVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • LaV says:

            “the only way they will have a chance is PLP will have to self destruct.”

            Oh, we’re good then. Once the plp have spent all of OJs money, there will be nothing left, and no one left to blame, but themselves…but of course, they’ll blame ‘certain people’ instead of taking any responsibility….that’s what power hungry people do :)

        • Onion Juice says:

          Sorry Charlie

  5. vote for me says:

    If the story is correct, 8 of the 11 OBA MPs supported Cannonier. Therefore 3 did not. I would be Atherden.

    Any guesses on the other 2 that did not support Cannonier?

  6. lizard says:

    Cannonier did a lousy job the 1st time round, and was unsuccessful in business. Great choice if your a PLP supporter.

  7. sick & tired says:

    OBA why are you going backwards. Cannonier was a bad leader the last time. Are you trying to say there is no one else in your party qualified enough to lead you? At this rate you will never be in power again.

    • Toodle-oo says:

      One of the things we must stop doing is using the term ‘in power’. As a very wise contributor used to say before he left the island some years ago, ‘It’s not in power , it’s in responsibility’ .
      ‘In power’ is used by the misinformed masses to feed their egos.

  8. Y-Gurl says:

    Is this the best of the worst? Far to much baggage and will ensure the OBA never gets re elected

  9. Bullwinkle T. Mooseknuckle says:

    I know what your thinking…has Bullwinkle throw his hat in the ring?
    No…not as yet…besides Rocky the squirrel wears that pilots hat and goggles…he is a flying squirrel.
    I will however considered the Ramifications ovit and think it over…