OBA’s Cannonier On The “Million Dollar Election”

August 25, 2020 | 32 Comments

Craig Cannonier Bermuda December 2018It is “an insult” that the Premier “would contrive to underestimate our collective intelligence by trying to convince us that he is calling a million dollar election to save the country money,” OBA Leader Craig Cannonier said.

Mr Cannonier said, “We have been dealt a terrible and unexpected blow – Covid-19. For Bermuda, the pandemic arrived at a time when business confidence was already at a record low and the economy failing.

“Thanks to Premier David Burt and his flawed government policies, a pre-Covid Bermuda saw the loss of 200 Bermudian jobs in retail, people left the Island and we had less to spend due to new – and higher – PLP-imposed taxes such as the sugar tax which increased everyone’s grocery bills.

“We still await news of any viable solutions to address our social justice or economic issues beyond the standard ‘divide and conquer’ mantra. And now, as Covid infections again reach double digit figures, he wants us to go out voting and put our health at risk.

“In 2017/18 the One Bermuda Alliance handed over a Government that was only $8 million away from a balanced budget. Since that time, this PLP Government has squandered the people’s money:

  • “In January 2020, at great expense to the Bermuda taxpayer, David Burt’s labour government vehemently fought a three-year battle to remove contractual benefits of government employees.
  • “A May 2019 estimate by OutBermuda suggested that the total cost of the same sex marriage court cases is likely to cost taxpayers as much as $3 million.
  • “David Burt is willing to spend $1 million of our money on an unnecessary general election, but he is not willing to fund independent court advocates for our vulnerable young people, particularly those who come under the care of the Department of Child and Family Services.

“How many buses would this have bought? How many potholes would this have fixed?

“This is a continuation of a PLP trend – an inability to manage the public purse. We all pay for that.

“At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Premier said that our public health depends on our individual responsibility and we could have a say on how Bermuda’s Covid story would unfold.

“So, we did what we had to do – we stayed home, washed our hands, socially distanced and wore our masks.

“The result is that the Centre for Disease Control upgraded Bermuda’s country classification to Alert Level-2, which means our COVID-19 risk is moderate and new cases are decreasing or stable.”

Mr Cannonier added that “as Covid cases reach double figures again, the Premier is asking us to jeopardize our health” to “hold his million dollar election.”

“Clearly, he has no concern about the risk he is asking our seniors and those who are immuno-compromised to take, for the sake of a vote. Are these are the actions of a man who says that he cares about the people?

“It is well within his right to call an election. However, it is an insult that he would contrive to underestimate our collective intelligence by trying to convince us that he is calling a million dollar election to save the country money.

“What he is essentially saying to us is, “Bermuda, I want you to compromise your health and safety, so that I can have an opportunity to secure my position for another five years. It doesn’t matter that I don’t have a plan to help you. I just want your vote”.

“This is unacceptable and we cannot allow ourselves to be manipulated.

“Once the airlines decided they were no longer going to fly to Bermuda due to the pandemic, David Burt took the necessary steps to shut the country down.

“However, he has not given us any hope that he knows how to re-open our economy in a way that will create jobs and raise the confidence and hopes of Bermudians.

“The Premier believes that Bermuda’s next chapter is independence, and he would like to collectively build the foundation for that. But independence is not the solution. It is a propaganda tool that appeals to a small segment of our population and is not the solution to the challenges looming before us.

“This is our moment to mobilize like never before. We have the opportunity to implement and effect real change. Change that brings hope, change that puts people first.”

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Comments (32)

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  1. Noah James says:

    ah yes … independence … a stated PLP aim and if they win, that will mean 5 more years for them to engineer it

  2. Bermuda Bum says:

    This election is a complete and utter waster of public time and money. It will change noting except expose citizens to a higher COVID risk that if we stayed home. I won’t be voting.

  3. TRUTH says:

    JETGATE knows after this election his political career is OVER. The OBA has to beyond desperate to have this man leading. I was one of the 20% that kept the UBP in power back in the day. Lets be honest although they had issues the economy was going good. The BDA merge with the UBP to create the OBA because black voters started to believe the UBP was racist so my family gave the OBA a chance.

    Within that year the UBP took full control. It might have been planned that way only the top brass would know the truth and they will not talk about it.

    If we want to be honest both the new UBP aka OBA and PLP have supporters that don’t trust the other based on skin color. This will always be unfortunately this is the World we live in.

    Craig is not fit to lead the opposition and the majority of OBA members know this. They have people more qualified but their white and afraid if they have a white face they will continue to lose.

    • Hey says:

      Just asking, how was UBP racist? I keep hearing this from people trying to plant this in peoples minds in order to emotively sway votes. At one point there were no party politics, the. The PLP formed to control decisions, rather than each member voting on things based on their constituency. The only way to hold PLP accountable For decisions was by forming a party. So all this party politics is the PLP fault,

      The few members of the old UBP I’ve spoken to are not racist, far from it.

      All the emotive race baiting comes from posters with a PLP promoting bias. I know the OBA are an inclusive party for all Bermudians, to me that is progress to beat racism. The PLP seem hellbent on ensuring that division ibased on race is promoted as a must have as it serves their purpose. I want racism gone, do you?

      • Toodle-oo says:

        I too have asked many , many times , without any answer , for these people who make these claims to explain how the UBP was a racist party when they always had a minimum 50% lineup of black candidates and during their tenure the black middle class grew in leaps and bounds with the creation of more black millionaires per square mile than anywhere else on earth .
        Home ownership , world travel , children going overseas for secondary education , opening of private business and more all exploded.
        Doesn’t really sound like a racist party to me but a lot of people like their divisive fairy tales .

      • Wake up Bie says:

        You should ask the UBP aka oba that. They changed the name and leaders so many times to run from their racist past.

      • wahoo says:

        Earth shattering. We can always count on you to lift our self esteem and erase any doubts we may have in our ability to debate a subject.

      • Ringmaster says:

        Back to the old 14 number again, yet no explanation of what it means.

    • Toodle-oo says:

      You make some valid points , but with reference to ..

      “They have people more qualified but their white and afraid if they have a white face they will continue to lose.”

      So exactly who is it that has a problem , the OBA or the electorate ?

      • truthertz says:

        Exactly. He/she doesn’t realise with that last comment he proved that the electorate is the one with the racial problem.

      • Herbalist says:

        The OBA is the UBP.
        The electorate that departed was the black voters. You know this already. Oct 1st at 12am turn the candles off in the party.

  4. Islander says:

    Stating this only tells voters, “You should vote for us because other guys are terrible.”

    There are no solutions provided in this article. There is no platform. Yes, you can remind us about why we shouldn’t vote for your opponents but you need to follow that up with solutions. That’s what the Bermudian public needs right now. Solutions.

    I really want to vote for you guys but right now, there doesn’t seem like much reason to. Fix that.

    • Cow Polly says:

      like the PLP, the OBA will roll out its platform, you will see solutions then. remember the role of the opposition is to point out the flaws in Government….

    • Anonymous says:

      Are you talking about the PLP? Because thats their MO. Even when they’re in power they still relentlessly blame to OBA for everything thats going wrong on the island.

  5. JAWS says:

    Cannonier needs to start writing his $350k resignation speech.

    • Lock Jaws says:

      That is sooo funny. Perhaps we can get some checks written to the taxpayers for 20 years of dubious deals and mysterious cost over runs. Maybe a check for the “missing” $800M? Also with all the gold you guys got in the Arbitrade headquarters we could buy everyone a house in Martha’s Vineyard. Suckers….

      • JAWS says:

        Last I check it was you clowns in the oba circus that has Bermudians screwed on a airport we have to pay for and the 185 million morgans point buy a shack deal.

  6. newperspectiva says:

    OBA added a $1 billon to the national debt while they were in power. We can also thank them for the Morgan’s point guarantee payout and the Airport guaranteed income. Good debt also needs to be repaid.

    Cannonier, you are worried about the “Million dollar election”. You should be worried about your ability to do the right thing in the best interest of the country. Do Bermuda a favor and join the other old-guard group you are encouraging to resign. The OBA thought they had an Obama when they got you to join their ranks.If you and the other don’t, not only will the OBA lose,but the PLP will gain an even bigger margin.

    • Double S says:

      The OBA inherited a $400mn+ ANNUAL deficit from the PLP in 2013. By the time they were voted out they have more than halved that PLP incurred ANNUAL deficit. When they assumed office the first thing they had to do was borrow just to make payroll due your PLP’s incompetence. You should be thanking the OBA for not taking the drastic measures to reduce the deficit and slow the debt increase even faster.

      You act like when the PLP were voted out the payment obligations they put on the BDA taxpayer went with them. So that argument is disingenuous at best. Your Party destroyed a vibrant economy and healthy Government finances in less than 10 years. Own it.

      PLP will win, but the fact remains is that they are no better than the previous PLP of 2006 to 2012. Just look at the last GDP reports which show an economic contraction in Q3 and measly 0.3% growth in Q4 . And those pathetic numbers were prior to Covid-19 and when the USA economy was booming. Own it.

      • new perspectiva says:

        I’m neither a OBA or PLP supporter. Yes their performance was and will continue to be doubtful, even more so with the new norm.

        What I find amazing is no one is complaining about borrowing for pension payments. Since 2012 to now we keep on borrowing. YES, only good debt is okay, but spending $1millon to let the people have their say is bad debt?

    • Toodle-oo says:

      You love to trott out that ‘they added 1bn of debt’ thing but you never mention that they inherited a broke government that didn’t have any money to pay the CS and they had to honour previous PLP commitments. And they did it without doing what the Barbadian government did. Maybe they should have , then you wouldn’t be able to make the ‘they doubled the debt’ claims.
      I think they shouldn’t have borrowed another cent , whatcha think about that ?

      • newperspectiva says:

        When the PLP lost the debt was $1.4bn. When the OBA lost the debt was $2.4bn. Not doubled, but close!! As I said, good debt and like all debt it must be repaid.

    • Hey says:

      Wrong,OBA came in and had to immediately raise money to meet payroll for the civil service.
      Morgan’s point was not in default. The Finance minister triggered the debt guarantee becoming the governments Debt by paying It when he did not need to.

      It was a move to land grab, at what was thought was reasonable for the total debt, but the reality was that the land included was far less than envisioned. This was a complete screw up by PLP. They put us on the hook. Hugely embarrassing move by the PLP.

      Remember they swapped Southlands for Morgan’s point, before the OBA were elected.

      Look into things, and don’t just buy the spin, hype and cover up.

      • newperspectiva says:

        Good try!! The people who put up the money wanted their money as agreed. You are the one who is spinning.

    • Ringmaster says:

      Yes they did, and what a mistake. They should have done the right thing for Bermuda and fired 50% of the Civil Service admin staff. Instead they borrowed money to keep them. Huge mistake.

      • Just because you had 50% black candidates lineup you cant be racist, having hand picked Surrogates (which was noted in de secret memo report) is a joke.
        UBP was racist when they were first formed and had a Black Premeir.
        But it has always nice to know that Bermuda is known not to have Racism.
        LMAO

      • newperspectiva says:

        Yes they should have!! I totally agree! They should have carried out the recommendation made by the SAGE Commission. Another waste of taxpayer money.

        The PLP is now in power and they’ve completely ignored the report. They did, however stated recently that there is a new norm and things will have to change. This is just lip service.

        They know their main support comes from supporters who benefit from the generous handouts, and PLP politicians really take care of themselves first. BUT NOT JUST THEM, SO DO THE OBA POLITICIANS!! Have a chat with Cannonier.

  7. Average Bermudian says:

    This guy Cannonier is a JOKER.

  8. andrew little says:

    …..I Know…. EveryBody on the OBA, Should !Cross the Floor! and Join the PLP, that would be Exciting to see…!!!??

  9. Toejam Express says:

    PICTURE IT, BERMUDA, 2ND OCTOBER 2020 AT 12AM

    PLP = 36 seats
    OBA = 0 seats

    Will the OBA on seeing these results finally get the message that they are a failed party AND that its leader is a failed leader?? What are your plans to get Bermuda’s economy going again, Mr. Cannonier?? Lets hear it!!

  10. No chance says:

    This general election is a complete waste of time and money and should never have been called during these infectious times. Only called to stroke the ego of a self centered individual who is leading Bermuda and his own electorate down the wrong path. Might as well turn the house of assembly into low cost housing. Bermuda, pay attention to the historical signs, they are well documented.

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