Election 2020: OBA platform a ‘social contract’ with Bermuda

  • Election platform: OBA leader Craig Cannonier (File photograph by Akil Simmons)

    Election platform: OBA leader Craig Cannonier (File photograph by Akil Simmons)

The One Bermuda Alliance has revealed its “social contract” with the island — and said it was something “all Bermudians can believe in”.

A message from Craig Cannonier, the party’s leader, told the public the election platform was “a reflection of your concerns and needs and what is best for Bermuda”.

He added: “It represents our solemn promise to you to be better for Bermuda.

“Our social contract takes into account our economic realities and social challenges.

“It contains policies and initiatives that will help all Bermudians be successful.

“From our education ideas to our plans to assist seniors, this is truly a contract that all Bermudians can believe in. It is balanced, bold where we need to take steps to ensure Bermuda is not left behind in a global world, and contains better solutions to current, problematic issues.

“It is about stability and transformation.”

Mr Cannonier said he was proud of what the former OBA government achieved from 2012 to 2017.

He added: “Bermuda was in the economic doldrums and our policies helped Bermuda immensely.

“We have a repeat of economic depression and must have the best team to manage the people’s money prudently — that is the OBA.

“Our party has gone through a period of reflection and rebuilding. This has culminated in a party with new candidates and fresh ideas, along with tried and proven experience.”

Mr Cannonier insisted that the OBA will “do better, much better than what you have had to endure over the last three years”.

He added: “We will leave no one behind.”

The OBA’s framework for economic progress included “a check on massive borrowing and focus on debt reduction; removal of disincentives to doing business; small business development targeted at Bermudians and nurturing of a new sector around young people and their love of and acumen with technology and entertainment”.

It added that the party would also tackle problems such as “immigration policy to attract more spending and long-term investments in Bermuda”.

The OBA said it also planned to “repeal the sugar tax, reduce the tax on purchasing US dollars, and reassess all new and burdensome Burt administration taxes”.

The platform said that the party would make sure “our people are empowered with the necessary skills to take advantage of job opportunities, so Bermudians flourish as entrepreneurs and business owners”.

The document, released just days before the General Election on Thursday, added that the OBA would “work with banks, international businesses and other organisations to address the systemic inequalities that affect Bermudians”.

The platform said efforts would be made to reduce the island’s “massive debt by controlling public spending and generating economic growth in existing and new market sectors”.

The OBA pledged to make sure that all Bermudians had health insurance coverage “that is evidence-based, managed by independent professionals and not by the Government as per the Burt Administration’s proposed, but now on-hold, unified scheme”.

The OBA said it would introduce a “unique patient identifier” to help “reduce duplication of services and drive down the cost of healthcare for all”.

It added it would set up an independent education authority and supplement schools with teams of “foundational counsellors, to support our children and instil the skills needed for life”.

The platform said that the OBA would reduce the number of parliamentary seats and shrink the size of the Cabinet.

It pledged to “hold a referendum on St David’s becoming a separate parish” and introduce fixed-term elections.

The party said it would make sure the island had “well-paved and weed-free roads, with garbage collected twice per week during summer months”.

The OBA added that it would “exploit our marine sector to build a blue economy in which Bermuda becomes not just a place for sea adventurers, but is positioned as world leader for research and co-ordinator of conferences and tours aimed at protecting the marine environment worldwide”.

A Progressive Labour Party spokeswoman said last night that the OBA platform mentioned David Burt, the Premier, or the PLP “22 times in just 20 pages”.

She added: “That’s more than one mention per page. In contrast, the PLP’s 40-page manifesto mentioned the OBA only two times.

“The OBA’s platform, like their campaign, is missing ideas for economic recovery.

“Instead, it just offers attacks against our party leader David Burt and the PLP government along with vague statements about reforming healthcare and creating jobs.”

To view the platform in full, click on the PDF link under “Related Media”

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Published Sep 28, 2020 at 8:00 am (Updated Sep 28, 2020 at 6:31 am)

Election 2020: OBA platform a ‘social contract’ with Bermuda

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