Speculation Swirls: Possible Cabinet Shuffle

December 10, 2013

Speculation about a possible political shuffle is swirling, with various talk circulating that Premier Craig Cannonier may be planning to make some changes within Cabinet.

After winning at the polls on 17th December 2012, Premier Cannonier appointed twelve Cabinet Ministers who were sworn in by Governor George Fergusson on 20th December 2012.

All the Cabinet Ministers after being sworn in last year:

cabinet ministers sworn in Dec 2012

The Premier made some changes to the way the Ministries operated under the PLP administration, with Tourism teamed with Transport, while Economic Development and Home Affairs became stand-alone Ministries.

There have been no changes since that time, discounting the minor change which saw the Ministry of Community & Cultural Development renamed to the Ministry of Community, Cultural Development & Sport.

If the Premier is in fact planning to make changes, it would be his first Cabinet shuffle since taking office.

Tweet from Shadow Finance Minister David Burt this afternoon:


The recent SAGE Commission report suggested cutting back the size of Cabinet from 12 to 8 Ministers, and reducing the number of elected MPs from 36 to 30.

A [completely unscientific] online poll we ran last week showed that 80% of readers who took part in the poll thought we should reduce both MPs and Ministers.

9% thought we should reduce Cabinet Ministers only, 5% thought we should fire them all, and 3% thought we should reduce MPs only. 2% voted no, while 1% voted for none of the options.

The Cabinet as it stands presently:

  • Leah Scott: Minister Without Portfolio
  • Dr Grant Gibbons: Minister of Economic Development
  • Sylvan Richards: Minister of Environment and Planning
  • Shawn Crockwell: Minister of Tourism & Transport
  • Patricia Gordon-Pamplin: Minister of Health & Seniors
  • Michael Dunkley: Minister of Public Safety
  • Wayne Scott: Minister of Community, Cultural Development & Sport
  • Mark Pettingill: Attorney General & Minister of Legal Affairs
  • Trevor Moniz: Minister of Public Works
  • Bob Richards: Minister of Finance
  • Senator Michael Fahy: Minister for Home Affairs
  • Senator Nalton Brangman: Minister of Education

Update 8.34pm: The Premier’s office announced they will be holding a press conference tomorrow morning. The topic was not revealed, however speculation continues to build that the Premier may announce Cabinet changes soon, with suggestions being made that he may reduce the size of Cabinet.

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  1. Live Blog: Premier Announces Smaller Cabinet | Bernews.com | December 11, 2013
  1. Ringmaster says:

    Let’s hope that the OBA is reducing the number of Ministers. My recollection is that it was the PLP that increased the number to 15, and with all the reshuffles not just because of lack of performance but probably to enable as many as possible to collect their pension pot. 8 is more than enough to run a small community like Bermuda.

    • Concerned Citizen says:

      Can someone please educate ringmaster as to the constitutional limit for cabinet? Your silly, ignorant spin in an attempt to attack the PLP reveals just how dishonest AND ignorant many Oba supporters are. You can even lie properly! Smh. You MUST be an OBA minister or insider.

      • Ringmaster says:

        For your information, although this will be too hard for you to understand I did not vote for the OBA. You are one of the many brainwashed who believes any one who criticizes the PLP must be OBA. If only more PLP supporters criticized the PLP during their 14 year term Bermuda might not be where it is today. The PLP hierarchy managed to do whatever they wanted knowing their supporters would stay silent. You are the ones who will suffer the most while the ex Premiers and MPs live the high life.

        • Its a fact says:

          Your comment is definitely not that of a PLP supporter!! If you are a supporter that chose not to vote then indeed you not voting was a vote for OBA!! UNLESS you voted independent.No difference!!! Anti-PLP

          • Hmmm says:

            The politicians have to earn your vote, don’t just give it to them freely as then they can do whatever THEY want!!!!!

    • JAWS says:

      I hope he terminates dumb and dumber Leah Scott & Nalton Brangman.

      Both of them are spineless jellyfish.

    • Robert says:

      You are so misinformed, all in an afford to legitimize this lame oba govt.

      • Grammar Po Po says:

        Robert, for God’s sake, please make a better effort to spell properly. It really does make a difference if you want people to take you seriously.

    • LR says:

      Seeing that you can only have a Maximum on 13 in Cabinet (Which the OBA currently have) you are talking foolishness when you say the PLP had 15. Also, last PLP Cabinet was NOT at the maximum.

    • Bill Stephens says:

      Its our fault as we think we dont have a say in the running of OUR country – we do!

      Lets stop looking back and blaming PLP, UBP and lets blame US for tolerating the situation for so long!

      We assume that elected Politicians know how to do their assigned duties – they really dont! They ALL seek advice from people close to them / have their ear and they typically are all out for themselves

      We need to set clear performance goals for the group and that will crystalized them to ACT as a GROUP and that will also stop them from looking at every and any opportunity for personal gain if we reward them for their performance versus their interference and control over everything

      Look – we dont need the government to run everything for us – some things like trash and mail = yes; other things like the airport and cutting grass = no

      Need government to focus on the social-economic support side of the country and let US address the business aspects of the country

      its easy if WE set the parameters for what WE expect / need from our elected officials – no matter if they are PLP, OBA or any one else!

      The ooposition should be helping US set the parameters and to ensure that the performance objectives are met instead of reacing to everything lets focus on getting what WE need out of everything!

      Time to take back OUR conuntry and have our elected officials SERVE the country – you are NOT royalty and you dont deserve our respect unless you EARN it through action and achievment of OUR goals! You are watching over the house and the community – you dont OWN my house or my community! Now please act like humans and get something tangible done – we really are ready to follow IF you would just LEAD!

  2. Watcher55 says:

    With a bit of luck maybe we can now have people in positions that they have actual experience in, let’s have an education minister with an education, a works and engineering minister with even a small clue about civil or mechanical engineering
    , to name only two.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      Yeah, kinda like when we had a junior reporter as Minister for W&E. How did that one work out? Oh, that was the one who brought in those mobile homes, which then sat here & there in storage, then were set up for a few years & have now been trashed.

      Normally one would expect 30 years, at least, out of those things.

      Yes, lets have another Minister who can manage like that.

      I’ll take the non engineer lawyer at W&E thankyou.

      • Clear as DAY says:

        Like really baby the PLP is no longer in power, let it go. Put pen to paper on who’s running the country today. You can’t compare apples to oranges. Some of you show your true colors on this blog site. After the election you would have thought people would have got down to business. In truth we are more divided then under the previous party. To much energy is being spent by you on this site Triangle.

        Why don’t you run for politics to make a change or are you already one of the OBA MP/Ministers not doing a good job to distract from your failure?

        • Triangle Drifter says:

          Whoops, stepped on some toes? Are you a PLP supporter who wants to make the past go away? Sorry bout that. Can’t change history. Don’t want to forget it either. Especially the recent past. Don’t want to make the same mistake again & some folks have either short or selective memorys.

          • Its a fact says:

            No lets not forget the recent past lets just forget privileges and entitlement that a certain segment of society received just by what they looked like!Part of the reasons behind the divide that we have today! Until that is talked about without people feeling uncomfortable because of shame and/or guilt then this cycle will never be broken! You get people commenting on here with a purpose to divide under a disguised name,cowardly spewing their trash.I must agree with you on one thing,SOME FOLKS HAVE EITHER SHORT OR SELECTIVE MEMORY! Especially YOU!!!

          • Sign Up says:

            Yeah, but you wouldn’t mind forgetting a little thing called segregation, or blatant racism that was displayed under the former UBp party, wouldn’t you. Funny how some are so quick to dismiss that past, when black Bermudians were held down for so long, yet they refuse to let go of plp’s awful mismanagement and shortcomings.

            Everyone wants to put the past behind them, when it was the other man who was affected by it. But something that affected them, they harp on it all the way to the grave!

            You, like so many others on this site make me laugh. Everyday it’s plp this and plp that. Talking about a party who’s been out of power for a year. Yet god forbid someone mention the continued struggles of the black man. All you get in response is it’s in the past, or stop bringing up the race card. Maybe you suffer from selective memory.

            Written by a true Bermudian. Not a plp/Oba puppet……

            • Sapphire says:

              EXCELLENT POINTS!!! I also get tired of the selective memories.

          • Wake up triangle drifter says:

            What if every black man & woman thought about the past! When your ancestors had people of color as slaves, in chains. We couldn’t own land or vote. Go read about Nelson Mandela’s struggle hopefully it will cure the venom in your heart.
            “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”


  3. Young Bermudian says:

    Let’s hope they start by removing the Minister w/o Portfolio. It seems as if this position is a total waste of taxpayers’ money, particularly in this economic climate.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      That seems like a pretty obvious one to eliminate completely. Who started that one anyway? I really don’t know.

  4. Tina says:

    Lea Scott is being paid for not doing a damn thing !!! she does not answer her email…. what a waste of our tax payers money…FIRE HER …

  5. swing voter says:

    Gov’t MPs should work for $1.00 per year and slash the CS by 1/3 and privatized public transportation and post office….we’ll re-elect them in 4 years for making bermuda solvent again

    • Robert says:

      Oh go soak ya head dreamer !!!

    • Al says:

      So how are they supposed to eat? Or are we just going to limit Minsterial positions to people who are already retired?

      • Mark says:

        At Al, they’ll eat alright. Remember most of these ppl in Cabinet do have full-time jobs outside of their political jobs.

      • Rich says:

        And who are independently wealthy. Because we know how good an idea that is.

    • LR says:

      And we’ll have worse than we have now. You want quality people…. Pay them!

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      $1 per year eh? So I guess you would like to go back to MPs who are independently wealthy i.e. the established successful business owners who give time to Parliament as well as oversee their businesses.

      Is that what you want?

  6. blackberry says:


    • Triangle Drifter says:

      Why? Would you rather have a cog in the wheel? That one did a good job inna!

    • Young Bermudian says:

      I agree! He seems like a good person but he is not fit to be the leader of our country.

      • Mike Hind says:

        Why not?

        • Triangle Drifter says:

          YB must be somebody who prefers pop & sizzle, or was it pop & fizzle, over boring, unpretentous, quietly get the job done style of leadership.

        • Young Bermudian says:

          I think it is fair to say that since being elected, the Premier has shown time and time again his inability to make sound decisions and truly lead his party. I know that you tend to blindly support and defend the OBA but in this instance, if you were to be objective, you would certainly agree.

          • Mike Hind says:

            A) not an OBA supporter. Your attempt to paint me as one smacks of desperation.

            B) when? Give some examples. Stop just spouting fabrications and start backing up your claims.

          • Sandy Bottom says:

            Give three examples.

          • Triangle Drifter says:

            Am I 100% happy with the OBA? Not by a long shot. Am I 100% happy with Craig Cannonier as Premier? Nope again. I would have been much happier if John Barritt had stayed on. But hey, the Bermuda voter is what the Bermuda voter is. The right thing was done. The OBA is a team with a captain who can’t do anything without his team. It is not a dictatorship commanded by one.

            The OBA team is not perfect but they are a world away better than the hopeless PLP, past or present.

            Look closely, people who generally support the OBA don’t sit quiet when they do not agree.

      • Mark says:

        Young Bermudian….have you ever worked with Craig Cannonier and seen his demeanor? Trust me he’s NOT a nice person and I agree HE is NOT fit to be the leader of this country!

  7. Kangoocar says:

    The plp sheeple are now in a tizzy!!! They are afraid that the OBA are going to actually do the correct thing and start reducing the size of the cabinet !!! This is something their moronic previous leaders would have never done!!! The plp’s moto was, me me me first and to heck with the damage we are causing!!!

    • somuchless says:

      True. I went to the pee l pee and they said your name is not on the friends and family list so get lost. I said wow. So much for STANDING STRONG.

    • Its a fact says:

      kangoocar, did you hatch within the last 15 years? Don’t talk about me,me,me! Please!!! why do you think we have so much divide? I can assure you its not because of the last 15 years!!! Just look at the seniors today, a lot of them suffered back then and as a result are still suffering!! A big percentage are still working and most have nothing to leave their family while others prospered simply by what they looked like and that didn’t happen in 14 years of PLP power, that happened during the previous UBP/OBA Government! If I’m correct that was about 40 years of suffering!! Either long term memory loss or just ignorant! That’s for you to decide

      • Kangoocar says:

        You would have a much better argument if all blacks prospered under the plp!!! But the fact is very few did, only the ones in the tight inner circle of your plp did, while most blacks today are in a worst position than they were 14 yrs ago!!! How on earth can’t you see that??? One has to question who in fact is ignorant???

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


    • Unbelievebale says:

      Yeah it must really irritate the PLP.

      But all is yet to be revealed tomorrow.

  9. Devonshire Devils Advocate says:

    Has anyone considered that Terry Lister who is an independent at any point could return to the PLP or Kenny Bascome could walk the floor and return to the PLP thus making the PLP the majority in the House and thus having a PLP government?!?!

    • Young Bermudian says:

      It would take one MP in addition to those mentioned crossing the floor (or maybe Horton resigning as speaker) for the PLP to have a majority.

    • Robert says:

      Neither of those options will happen, but terry could join the govt as an independent minister, all in the spirit of transparency and collaboration.

  10. Vote for Me says:

    @ Ringmaster – 6:45 pm.

    The maximum number of Ministers including the Premier is 13 under the Constitution. Of the 13, at least 1 must be in the senate – i.e. non elected and appointed by the Premier.

    The actual number of Ministers is determined by the Premier – therefore there can be less than 13 but at least one must always be in the Senate.

  11. Opinions says:

    Do the right thing by taking a pay cut like Nelson Mandela did when he was the leader of South Africa and the other mp’s the same. All overpaid.

  12. Smh says:

    OBA will only last 1 term!!!

  13. Robert says:

    I hear terry lister will join cabinet

    • Bill Stephens says:

      Get rid of Moniz as he is too old school and too ultra-conservative on everything and anything that is considered new / change – we dont need the status quo – we need a new approach Bermuda. Combine his portfolio under Fahy as it is a people need solid government jobs tie in and Leah is history – no value whatsoever.

      Gibbons is just taking up oxygen – put his stuff under Richards for now as that portfolio ties to $ available for programs – now we have a smaller and tighter group

      Then instead of cutting – we reward!

      For example:
      You as a group fix Tourism / increase investment $ by 30% this year then you get 10% on top of what you get today. Unemployment down by 50% this year then you get 15% on top, etc. Support the creation of 50 new small businesses and you get 5% bonus, etc.

      The reward option will mobilize them to work as a team and to focus on the results WE want!

      Its time for US to set performance goals and measurements for OUR elected officials – we cant expect to pay peanuts and get results – we need to reward for good performance!

      Lets get these guys to toe the line and perform like they have something at stake!

  14. Its a fact says:

    Most politicians have other jobs. I know this wont ever happen but politicians should not be paid!! Then we would see who really cares about this country!!!

    • watching says:

      Most PLP Ministers did NOT have other jobs. They were fulltime. OBA Ministers mostly do have other jobs, hence the reason we are getting the halfway performance we are getting from some of them.

      • Mike Hind says:

        Then what was the reason we got even worse performances from the fulltimers?

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      While we are at it, lets just do away with party politics & return to an all independent Parliament like the 60s & before. You know, back when MPs were business people, independently wealthy, & able to give the time at little or no pay. They all had to work together back then.

      How would that work for you?

  15. Is D. Burt the Media Correspondant for the PLP says:

    Wondering if David Burt is the PLP official press lease person, that has to make comment on everything that goes one. Give it a break. My Xmas wish is for you lame self to step down and carry on doing something else that is more productive than critising every little thing that goes on, second hand information.

    Gosh! Does anyone else get tired?

    • Suzie Quattro says:

      Well, of all of them, he is the one who has experience of owning a website.