Cannonier on By-Election, Turnout & Candidates

December 16, 2010

Craig Cannonier, Leader of the Bermuda Democratic Alliance, congratulated all the candidates for coming out last night, saying “Putting oneself up for public service is not something to be taken lightly.”

The BDA Leader continued on to say that “To Mark, Devrae and Sylvan, I say your conduct as political adversaries in this campaign has been nothing short of exemplary. Each one of you has taken the high road in making their case to the voters. In so doing you have played a part in helping to restore our people’s faith in the future of politics.”

Mr Cannonier mentioned the low turnout and said “While I would be the first to acknowledge that the conduct of this by-election offers some hope in this regard, we cannot ignore the fact that there is a lot of work to be done to construct a new politics that is trusted by the people. Until we construct that new politics, a celebration of tonight’s outcome is inappropriate.”

Yesterday 460 voters turned out, cast 458 good votes, the PLP’s Marc Bean won in a landslide with 310 votes [67%]; the UBP’s Devrae Noel-Simmons came second with 78 votes [17%]; and the BDA’s Sylvan Richards was third with 70 votes [15%]. At 460 out of 1,149 registered voters, turnout was at approximately 40%.


Mr Cannonier’s full statement is below:

The voters of Warwick South Central have spoken. It is important first of all to thank all those who came out and did their civic duty. It is also important to acknowledge each of the three candidates in this historic by-election contest. Putting oneself up for public service is not something to be taken lightly.

And at this period of our history in Bermuda, when many people are disillusioned with politics, such willingness to step forward and serve is nothing short of a spirit of sacrifice. While we have our differences, no one can question your love for your country.

To Mark, Devrae and Sylvan, I say your conduct as political adversaries in this campaign has been nothing short of exemplary. Each one of you has taken the high road in making their case to the voters. In so doing you have played a part in helping to restore our people’s faith in the future of politics.

So, to all the candidates and to all the voters who came to the ballot box, I say congratulations.

And a special congratulations to Marc Bean.

The Bermuda Democratic Alliance is extremely proud of Sylvan Richards for carrying the banner of our movement in Warwick South Central. We are proud of his commitment, his sense of integrity, his willingness to serve. We are proud of his hard work throughout this campaign and we know it is only the beginning for Sylvan Richards. Rest assured, Bermuda, there are many more Sylvan Richards out there.

The BDA is on a forward movement to ensuring greater accountability and integrity in Bermuda’s public affairs. Our insistence on charting the way forward to a different, more inclusive, more authentic politics – a politics of integrity – has been vindicated by the very low turnout of this by-election.

Indeed, such a low turnout cannot simply be blamed on the inclement weather. Such a low turnout is an indictment of politics as practiced by the legacy parties.

While I would be the first to acknowledge that the conduct of this by-election offers some hope in this regard, we cannot ignore the fact that there is a lot of work to be done to construct a new politics that is trusted by the people.

Until we construct that new politics, a celebration of tonight’s outcome is inappropriate.

I invite all those who are actively engaged in politics, as well as our media institutions, our activists and ordinary citizens to join me in this mission.

Read More About

Category: All, News, Politics

Comments (30)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. nameless says:

    Those who were eligible to vote and did not should be ashamed. It is your democratic right and duty to vote, and to impact the way your country is governed.

    • White Jesus says:

      It is a right but not a duty! They also have a right to exercise that right or not. You should be ashamed for condemning peoples right not to vote. Those who wanted to vote voted. Those who didn’t are entitled to the degree of participation they so choose. I’d rather they vote but hey…..

      • nameless says:

        If someone objects on moral grounds, that’s different. But I find it an incredible stretch that 60% of people have a moral objection to voting. People are just too damn lazy to do a thing to change their country…other than complain about it.
        And frankly, with our country heading downwards as fast and as deep as it is, Bermudians do have a duty to do something about it before it’s too late.

  2. Tired of nonsense says:

    “To Mark, Devrae and Sylvan, I say your conduct as political adversaries in this campaign has been nothing short of exemplary. Each one of you has taken the high road in making their case to the voters. In so doing you have played a part in helping to restore our people’s faith in the future of politics.”

    I agree with Mr. Cannonier. Hopefully this is the new standard to be employed during elections going forward instead of the race baiting and fearmongering Tea Party like politricks that we have become accustomed to over the last several elections.

    Thank you for the younger generation of politicians for showing the old bitter dinosaurs (on both sides) how politics should be carried out in the best interests of all involved. No need for divide and conquer tactics if the candidate is truly genuine.

    A lesson learned…

  3. chris says:

    did yu all really expect a dif result..?

  4. Craig the Hypocrite says:

    Hey Craig,

    Your statement is nice. But, why is Sylvan Richards in his concession statement attacking the voters of the constituency? It’s SO arrogant for him to suggest that because they didn’t vote for him, that they didn’t vote for the best candidate.

    We should be bringing people in this country together, not pulling them apart. Bermuda deserves better than another arrogant politician like Sylvan Richards.

    • OK says:

      Duuuhhh…you are the biggest idiot. Go eat with your hero LaVerve.

      • David E. Chapman says:

        I completely agree with the sentiments by ‘Craig the Hypocrite’ and this has nothing to do with my desired outcome for the bye-election. The concession speech was condescending to the Warwick South Central voters who did turn up and those who perhaps were making an expressed statement by not voting, not to mention those who would have liked to turn up but couldn’t due to extraneous circumstances. This type of ‘attacking’ sentiment against “Bermudians that do not think like them” by those who are disenfranchised with the current government is one that seems to be on the rise, not realizing that instead of garnering more support that way, they actually are alienating more people.

        By the way ‘OK’, Senator LaVerne Furbert is a hero to many. From her early years assisting the Black Beret movement in Bermuda in the 1970s, to running as a political candidate in the 1980s in Southampton West, to her work alongside Mr. Freddie Wade and Mrs. Lois Browne-Evans from the 1980s-1990s, to her work in the trenches at Addiction Services assisting recovering addicts, to her work at the Bermuda Times, to her work in the Bermuda labor movement, to her many representations on government boards from as early as the 1990s including recently the Human Rights Commission and now as a black woman who has beat the odds and been asked to represent her people as a Senator….not to mention to her two sons, 5 grandchildren, nieces and nephews, sisters and countless friends and extended family….indeed she is a hero!

        • Tired of nonsense says:

          If all a hero entails is spouting off venom and racial rhetoric against all that oppose a certain way of thinking then I guess all hatefilled and intolerant individuals throughout the world should be labelled as “heroes.”

          • David E. Chapman says:

            You must not be speaking about my mother Senator LaVerne Furbert. Why don’t you provide some evidence rather than just attempting to slander? Then I will know you are looking to debate rather than just argue.

        • Tired of nonsense says:

          Mr. Chapman,

          Can I ask were you also so “outraged” when Mr. Bean lost out to Mr. Charlie Swan on the Southampton by-election a while back when Zane Desilva stated that the only reason he lost in that particular constituency was because the voters were racist?

          • David E. Chapman says:

            When did I say I was outraged in my last post…or even imply that? I simply commented on my opinion on another poster’s observations and what I perceive to be the resulting impact of the pattern he is pointing out.

            As to the comment by Mr. Desilva, I do not know anything about it and really do not see the relevance to my post or indeed to the BERNEWS article above, especially in context of my response. Perhaps you could provide a reference and then I can comment more appropriately in context.

            In any event, I suppose you are attempting to link Mr. Richard’s concession speech and his portrayal of the Warwick South Central voters preference to your purported comments from Mr. Desilva. Seeing as Mr. Desilva was not running for the Southamptom by-election you speak of, and Marc Bean was, that would only make sense if Marc himself would have come out and said something to that effect during that past Southampton bye-election. Your grasping at straws in my opinion.

            By the way, please do not get me confused as a PLP representative or blind follower of any person or group when I write. I am expressing my own independent viewpoint as a Bermudian. You seem to be incorrectly aligning me with a perception that is not my own but a creation of your own mind…This is inclusive as an application to the comments you write below.

            • Tired of nonsense says:

              I believe it is relevant because you are reprimanding Mr. Richards for comments which he made towards the voters in #26 as being disparaging and condescending. Both are one in the same whether you want to admit it or not despite the fact that the ultimate comment did not come from the actual candidate. It’s actually worse because it came from the mouth of a sitting MP. But to you and others comments like this are “justified” because they come from your team.

              Sorry mate knowing who your people are there is no chance that you couldn’t be a PLP supporter for life. And I don’t mean because your black (as is the assumption for whites and the UBP), but because your family has been entrenched in the PLP fabric since their beginning.

              Anyways, I tried to provide a link but I am unsure as to how to research the archives on the new RG site. Once figured out I would be happy to oblige and provide you with the reference.

              But he stated, I can’t remember if it was in the House or just a casual comment to the media, that the only reason Mr. Bean lost out in that particular by-election was because the constituents were simply racist. Point blank.

              And to try and state that this wasn’t a condescending and disparaging remark like your reference to Mr. Richard’s comments shows LOL is right when he states that you guys are pure propaganda and spin.

        • Tired of nonsense says:

          Some people in the UK veiw Nick Griffin of the EDL as being a “hero.”

          Doesn’t mean that he is…

          • David E. Chapman says:

            My mother is a hero to me and many others. Get over it.

  5. Tired of nonsense says:

    Sen. Furbert’s comments offend a large portion of the population on a weekly basis.

    All I can say is that if a white Bermudian went to the media and spoke in such derogatory terms about their black Bermudian counterparts there would be hell to pay. But since it is the opposite way around she is lauded as a “hero” and rewarded with a Senator’s seat.

    It amazes me that the PLP state that their party is for ALL Bermudians and regularly criticize white Bermudians for not joining the “movement” while simultaneously placing individuals into positions of power who have no qualms about spewing racial rhetoric and hatred throughout this island. For example, a few years back Minister Burch was on a talk show debating independence when a caller who was against the notion was asked by Minister Burch what color she was. That is just one example. I can easily delve into the numerous remarks by individuals such as Wentworth Christopher, Calvin Smith, Rolfe Commissiong Minister’s Blakeney, Burgess, Roban and Desilva, Senator’s Burch and Furbert. I won’t even get into the former Premier and his persistent digs at people that do not look like him.

    I just wish the Party and its supporters would be honest and say at this point in our history we simply do not care about white Bermuda and therefore do not expect us to be fair and/or civil when dealing with you. It is contradiction. Just stand by your position which you have so eloquently stated numerous times. The main thrust of the argument being that the PLP is a black party that does not need white support and thus don’t expect any olive branches or support. I can research these numerous quotes through several Bermuda blogs to provide evidence if needed. But my favorite one is when stated numerous times that one is not interested in debating with a certain person’s “ilk.”

    I just wish that the current powers that be just be true and state the obvious instead of playing the role of the “oh so innocent party” that seeks unity and is surprised and upset that more white Bermudians don’t join. I find it hilarious. Like a serious case of schizophrenia.

    Hopefully there will be a change within the Party (as they will not lose power anytime soon) which seeks unity instead of divisiveness. Larry Burchall wrote an article way back that Bermuda has been and still is only operating on 4 or 5 cylinders instead of 8 in light of the exclusion of one group from participating in political decisions that affect all of Bermuda and not just one support base. However I believe this will only come with the ascension of the younger and less bitter generation, to power who does not hold these past grudges and realize that as times change so do people and attitudes.

    • David E. Chapman says:

      Sen. Furbert’s comments also inspire and champion a large portion of the population on a weekly basis.

      What are the derogatory terms you speak about? Again, please give evidence. It shouldn’t be too hard as my mother Senator Furbert has written bi-weekly in the Worker’s Voice for the past few years as well as in several RG Letter’s to the Editor. Just be sure to put the comments in context rather than cut and splice to make some sort of point.

      You speak about Senator Burch, etc…..What do these people have to do with me or Senator Furbert, even if they uttered remarks that you or others find distasteful? Possibly this association is evidence of your own innate disfunction that you even associate them as a collective group with some sort of conspiratory master plan. In my view, I see them each as individuals in their own way who were shaped by their own experiences, and through some similar shared experiences are able to provide complimenting commentary on their views as they see it.

      By the way, when you go searching for your evidence, using a “blog” as a source as you mentioned above is probably not going to be very accurate.

      • Dragging A Lure says:

        I’m pretty sure that Tired of nonsense cannot produce any type of real evidence that would support his/her negative opinion on Senator Furbert. He/she cannot view information objectively.

        • LOL original) says:

          If its still there I encourge you to go to “Catch a Fire” Jonny Starllings site to find the prof. or you tube plp videos. You guys are str8 pr people.


          • Dragging A Lure says:

            You all make the comments, then you all must produce the evidence to support your accusations. Not the other way around.

            • Tired of nonsense says:

              So you are saying that you can prove your numerous incinuations that ALL white people are racist and look down upon their black Bermudian counterparts?

      • Tired of nonsense says:

        It blows my mind that some people will not take responsibility for their actions or rhetoric and pretend like it never happened. The derogatory terms can be found here:

        >Catch a Fire Blog – They were really ramped up in 2007 (just before the election), 2008 and 2009
        >Progressive Minds Blog has a few
        > Bermuda JEWEL
        > Workers Voice (my favorite article while not from Sen. Furbert instead from another writer where he categorically outlined his contempt for white Bermudians by stating that he has nothing in common with them so basically no tolerance of them either)
        >Radio Stations and “Talk” Shows

        Don’t just pay attention to Senator Furbert’s comments but also try the another certain poster. You know him pretty intimately as well. Or better yet read this same individual’s posts on Bermuda Sucks when he posted under the pseudonym “Tigga.” My favorite posts was where he advocates for all white people to leave Bermuda as it isn’t their country and stated that he was going to sit back from afar and wait patiently for the “race war to start.”

        And why isn’t a blog a reputable source to quote from if the poster uses their own name and consistently reminds everyone that they do so because they are the only one with strong “convictions” (i.e. stands by everything they write)and are not the same as the “cowards” hiding behind a pen name. It was written so the individual said it.

        I understand that you, and many others, don’t believe disparaging remarks about white people to be a bad thing and is ultimately justified because the commentators are simply “speaking pain.” I understand that this payback metality is pervasive in the Party and is considered to be just by many. But that doesn’t make it right or just. Hatred and intolerance can never be either of right or just.

        I guess it is all a matter of perspective.


        An individual could advocate for the enslavement of white people and you wouldn’t think it was disparaging. There is no point in trying to converse with you as you have already stated that you anothing but a troll looking to enrage others. Have a great day sir.

        • LaVerne Furbert says:

          Tired of nonsense,

          You have listed thre blogs that I have contributed to, yet you have been unable to cite any of the posts where my remarks have been inflamatory, disparaging, or racist. Why? Because there are no such comments that can be attributed to me. Then you go on to remark on something that was written by someone else in the Workers Voice, which makes little sense to me. That’s like blaming the editor of any other newspaper on opinions written by anyone other than the editor.

          I continue to read on this site and other sites in Bermuda where I’m supposed to have made racist and inflamatory remarks, yet none of the people who crticise “my comments” are able to quote me.

          I don’t think that you have ever heard me make any such remarks on talk radio either.

          • Tired of nonsense says:

            You are right Senator Furbert.

            You are a shining beacon/example of how to foster unity and progressiveness for all to behold.

            I was wrong and now converted.

            I provided the links while some were edited. Guess they are worried that you might issue a writ against them for simply regurgitating what you said.

        • Dragging A Lure says:

          Tired of nonsense
          Thanks for the understanding and compliment. LOL Ha Ha Ha
          You’re still conversing crap that can be related to trolling.

      • Tired of nonsense says:

        Oh and by the way I did provide examples in the previous post. But unfortunately Bernews edited my post past the point of recognition. I understand why, but I don’t agree.

        I believe if hate filled people feel comfortable and are permitted by the media to spew divisive rhetoric then I should be afforded the opportunity to rebut and regurgitate to the public as to what has been said.

        I understand why bernews did what they did as they need to look out after their own wellbeing. But it is still double standards…

        • bernews says:

          Sorry, trust me, I understand….and hate to have to censor, but we get hammered on comments quite a bit…as in people calling to complain. Not by anyone discussed in this thread mind you, but previously.

          As a still fairly new business bootstrapping along with limited resources, we really want to stay clear of even the mildest chance of legal issues.


          • Tired of nonsense says:

            No need to apologize. I completely understand especially when you have a certain political party and their members wishing the demise of the free media whilst also advocating that certain journalists be arrested and charged with, um, what I guess that interpret as being “treason.”

            Like I said no need to apologize as I believe Bernews is doing an excellent job, even in the face of zealots who seek to suppress free speech when it doesn’t happen to subscribe to their beliefs.

            happy holidays to all bernews staff.

        • LaVerne Furbert says:

          Certainly, if you were quoting me, Bernews would have no reason to edit your posts.

  6. Tired of nonsense says:

    “Then you go on to remark on something that was written by someone else in the Workers Voice, which makes little sense to me. That’s like blaming the editor of any other newspaper on opinions written by anyone other than the editor”

    Senator Furbert, if you cannot see the hypocrisy in the statement which you made above then it is if no wonder that you cannot detect the hateful tone in which you speak of others that do not subscribe to your point of view and why so many interpret your statements as being intolerant and inflammatory. As I said to Mr. Chapman in an earlier post it appears to be simply a matter of perspective.

    But anyways, I find that statement a little contradictory as you announced that you were planning to sue Bill Zuill and the RG for that Letter to the Editor earlier this week. So why are YOU blaming the RG editor for someone else’s opinion as it is a total contradiction to your defense above?