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'Final Thrushy flies out!’ Premier Smith says goodbye

-His legacy is one of the worse as a political leader in the VI, but excellent medical doctor
Premier of the Virgin Islands, Dr. the Hon D. Orlando Smith (AL) will forever be remembered as one of the best medical doctors in the Territory and the region, helping countless residents, delivering babies and saving many lives. Photo: Facebook
The Auditor General Ms Sonia M. Webster stated in her report on the wall that there was no value for money, it was overpriced and broke financial laws with contractors paid for work not done. Photo: VINO/File
The Auditor General Ms Sonia M. Webster stated in her report on the wall that there was no value for money, it was overpriced and broke financial laws with contractors paid for work not done. Photo: VINO/File
While many of his fellow residents remain homeless, jobless and some in his own National Democratic Party (NDP) told the VI House of Assembly (HoA) that there are children going to bed hungry, Dr. Smith still claimed, “I take satisfaction in knowing that the BVI’s economy is resilient and continues to grow.” Photo: VINO/File
While many of his fellow residents remain homeless, jobless and some in his own National Democratic Party (NDP) told the VI House of Assembly (HoA) that there are children going to bed hungry, Dr. Smith still claimed, “I take satisfaction in knowing that the BVI’s economy is resilient and continues to grow.” Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – Premier of the Virgin Islands, Dr. the Hon D. Orlando Smith (AL) will forever be remembered as one of the best medical doctors in the Territory and the region, helping countless residents, delivering babies and saving many lives.

It is also fitting that the Virgin Islands (VI) biggest medical facially, the Peebles Hospital on Tortola will soon carry his name.

However, as a Politician and Premier of the British Overseas Territory for 8 years, he has been regarded as a failure with many saying he set the Islands backwards some 10 plus years.

In his farewell speech aired yesterday, Monday, February 18, 2019, the outgoing Premier noted, “I put my trust in the fair judgement of history and of my fellow citizens.”

His legacy

While many of his fellow residents remain homeless, jobless and some in his own National Democratic Party (NDP) told the VI House of Assembly (HoA) that there are children going to bed hungry, Dr. Smith still claimed, “I take satisfaction in knowing that the BVI’s economy is resilient and continues to grow.”

His political successor Hon Myron V. Walwyn (AL) has been labelled as the most “divisive political figure in the Territory,” pitting locals against Caribbean brothers and sisters and playing the race card according to social commentator, Claude O. Skelton-Cline. Further, Mr Smith even stated, “I wish that our community was more unified.”

Over the last year, Premier Smith presided over the breakup of the NDP as many have claimed he along with Mr Walwyn had a part to play in the party splitting into two, however, Dr Smith said despite it all “I have no regrets.”

Historians will also remember his political legacy as one mired by corruption allegations, raping of the public treasury with millions and millions unaccounted for and further, Dr Smith is leaving office with one of his Ministers under police investigation over a small wall constructed at the Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) with a price tag is $1.6M.

The Auditor General Ms Sonia M. Webster stated in her report on the wall that there was no value for money, it was overpriced and broke financial laws with contractors paid for work not done.

Good Doctor, Bad Politician

Dr Smith legacy will also be remembered for victimization of those who did not support his party, particularly civil servants and the free press, interference in every project, direct rule being imposed for the first time on our finances, mistrust by the United Kingdom Government and mistrust by international donors following Hurricanes Irma and Maria of 2017.

These actions have left the country broke according to answers given by Dr Smith himself in the HoA and many residents, especially the elderly have been sinking into poverty.

His embattled Education and Culture Minister, Hon Walwyn stated that he could no longer do anything to protect locals, a statement many residents saw as blatant discrimination.

However, there is some hope with the exit of Dr. Smith from politics, he has been one of the region’s best and most experienced medical Doctors and has literally saved many lives even after a disastrous run in office for 20 years (1999-2019).

22 Responses to “'Final Thrushy flies out!’ Premier Smith says goodbye”

  • sam the man (19/02/2019, 12:13) Like (39) Dislike (19) Reply
    well sah VINO you all not easy but the truth hurts
  • Thought (19/02/2019, 13:27) Like (33) Dislike (9) Reply

    Do you all forgot that people around the world read these things. 

  • JA (19/02/2019, 13:34) Like (84) Dislike (16) Reply
    I would remember Doc as one of the most humble politician in the BVI and the region. He is down to earth . He values others no matter where you come from, nationalities , color ,race etc. HE IS A WISE MAN.
  • 911 (19/02/2019, 14:02) Like (56) Dislike (15) Reply
    He let the M & M boys killed his legacy
  • RealPol (19/02/2019, 14:17) Like (26) Dislike (5) Reply
    Let’s wish Dr. Hon Premier Daniel Orlando Smith (At Large), MoF, bon voyage! Dr. Smith served the territory well as a physician/surgeon ( one of the first local doctors). But his foray into the world of politics was not as impressive. He was probably too nice for the rough and tumble world of politics where one must walk softly but carry and use a BIG stick. Dr. Smith brought the virtues of a physician to politics but it was ineffective and a mismatch. As the leader, didn’t take hold of government, letting ministries operate like governments within a government. He avoided making the tough calls. For example, he should have reshuffled the Cabinet a long time ago. But that is spilled milk. Money and family don’t mix well. May be too politics and family are problematic like oil and water.

    Moreover, the headline says ‘I have no regrets.’ However, in the body of the article, the Premier expressed regrets about extension of TBLIA, economy……..etc. Further, there should have been regrets about the $7.2M to BVI Airways, the repurposing of $8M from EE/LL sewage project, the ~$40M cost overrun at TPP, the ESHS Wall debacle, the slow response after hurricanes Irmaria……..etc. But if he did the best he could, it is what it is. His legacy will be spotty but may be in time history will be revised. It was a tough job. Best wishes on a well-deserved retirement!

    So what happens when all the thrushies fly out? May be now I can get a sugar apple, sour sop......etc.
  • Well (19/02/2019, 15:22) Like (38) Dislike (5) Reply

    Very Rude

    • @Well (19/02/2019, 18:09) Like (47) Dislike (7) Reply
      And disrespectful, not because you don’t support the party, have a little class
  • Concerned (19/02/2019, 15:30) Like (58) Dislike (7) Reply

    I am an expat and just cannot understand how you treat your own like that after years of taking care of all of you and as a politian you are calling him ****he is one of you and you treat him like that what will you do to me

    • church (19/02/2019, 19:59) Like (39) Dislike (5) Reply
      Amen!, they tear down their own. What a shame..
      Ungrateful people always remember the bad not the good. If you think irma kill a lot of people, a lot of them will die when Myron Walwyn become premier. The man born here and they still think he's an outsider, SICK PEOPLE.
  • 2grand (19/02/2019, 19:45) Like (18) Dislike (1) Reply
    Yes doc farewll time to kickback put your feet up chill wid your favorite beverage and reminise. More me time beach travel a cruise or two. Nice
  • facts (19/02/2019, 20:35) Like (13) Dislike (10) Reply
    The writing is tuff but accurate bottom line
  • Damon (19/02/2019, 22:11) Like (6) Dislike (7) Reply
    Dr. Smith did a lot for the people of the BVI as a doctor but to name the hospital after him, not sure that’s the best thing.. name carries too much of a bad taste in view of all of the mismanagement of tax payers monies!!.. This needs a vote from the people..
  • Unitarian (19/02/2019, 23:43) Like (6) Dislike (6) Reply
    “Pitting locals against Caribbean brothers and sisters”: I don’t think it’s Hon Walwyn doing that. It’s others do it to him and others. Look to your own conscience before pointing a finger.
  • Interested (20/02/2019, 07:06) Like (13) Dislike (0) Reply
    Thank you for your service to this territory and it’s people.I wish you God speed.
  • staff (20/02/2019, 07:52) Like (7) Dislike (3) Reply
    He has no regrets After giving us Myron and MARK

    Happy raydence
  • 7.2m (20/02/2019, 08:36) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    A sad legacy it was
  • wize up (20/02/2019, 09:38) Like (7) Dislike (1) Reply
    It is my personal opinion that Dr Smith served our country well in particular during his Medical Career: Dr Smith had some challenges during his Political Career because he had no firm grip on his ministries
  • civil servant (20/02/2019, 11:13) Like (17) Dislike (3) Reply
    Me again,

    Thank you Doctor Smith for all your contributions to the BVI, be they in the medical or political arena.

    We, the people of the BVI, have very short memories. We forget how we welcomed you and your team to take us 'off the reef' in 2003. We forget how we commended you as part of a two man opposition and overwhelmingly voted you in office again in 2011. We forget that the VIP, in the past, had such a bad wrap that we HAD to get rid of them and to do so we put our confidence in you.

    To be fair, I will say that you made mistakes, costly ones. Mistakes that I, myself criticized and probably if you were not retiring, would punish you at the polls for by not voting for you again this election cycle. But what I will not do is be so ungrateful as to label you a thrushy or as lame duck. I think the disrespect is unnecessary. If we think about it, if we collectively label you as such, then we would have to label ourselves as idiots as well as WE were the ones who, by process of an election, voted you to be Premier in the first place.

    While I might not agree with how you handled some matters of government business, and while I might think that we need to try another government at this time, I think that we should learn to respect people while they are alive and not wait until persons have died to write blogs, conveniently forgetting missteps, which put persons on a pedestal after we have disrespected, abused and called them out of their names.

    Give jack his jacket. He wasn't the best, but he does not deserve all this disrespect either. Doc, again, thank you for your contributions, and I wish you a blessed and restful retirement.


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