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Should the Premier be elected At-Large or from a District?

History shows the Chief Ministers/Premier from Districts have contributed more in building the country
Hon. Julian Fraser RA (R3) in his District at the Annual Prize giving Ceremony on June 27, 2014 for the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School in Sea Cows’ Bay. He is now the Chairman of the main opposition Virgin Islands Party. Photo: Team of Reporters
The parents, teachers and students of the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School praised and gave Kudos to the Virgin Islands Party Chairman Honourable Julian Fraser RA and Third District Representative for being there to support the school for the last 14 plus years. Photo: Team of Reporters
The parents, teachers and students of the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School praised and gave Kudos to the Virgin Islands Party Chairman Honourable Julian Fraser RA and Third District Representative for being there to support the school for the last 14 plus years. Photo: Team of Reporters
Here are other examples of two District Representatives who rose to become Chief Ministers of the Virgin Islands and have made invaluable and long lasting contributions to the Territory. Late Chief Minister Cyril B. Romney (R5) (left) has left a legacy of the offshore and tourism sectors; today our bread and butter. Late Chief Minister Willard Wheatley (R8) took the Virgin Islands out of grant-in-aid and became the first Minister of Finance, a portfolio we still maintain today. Photo: Internet source/Provided
Here are other examples of two District Representatives who rose to become Chief Ministers of the Virgin Islands and have made invaluable and long lasting contributions to the Territory. Late Chief Minister Cyril B. Romney (R5) (left) has left a legacy of the offshore and tourism sectors; today our bread and butter. Late Chief Minister Willard Wheatley (R8) took the Virgin Islands out of grant-in-aid and became the first Minister of Finance, a portfolio we still maintain today. Photo: Internet source/Provided
While some are suddenly claiming that the next Premier should be an At-Large Representative history will show that the greatest contributions to the development, growth, progress and prosperity of the Virgin Islands have come from Chief Ministers/Premier who came from a District. A proven example is late Chief Minister H. Lavity Stoutt (R1) (left) and Former Premier Honourable Ralph T. O’Neal OBE (R9). Photo: VINO/File
While some are suddenly claiming that the next Premier should be an At-Large Representative history will show that the greatest contributions to the development, growth, progress and prosperity of the Virgin Islands have come from Chief Ministers/Premier who came from a District. A proven example is late Chief Minister H. Lavity Stoutt (R1) (left) and Former Premier Honourable Ralph T. O’Neal OBE (R9). Photo: VINO/File
SEA COWS’ BAY, Tortola, VI - Representative of the Third District the Honourable Julian Fraser RA has declared that he is no longer just a District Representative but must be seen as a national leader with his new post as Chairman of the Virgin Islands Party (VIP).

He promised the people that he will do for the Territory what he has done for his District, however he still has to manage the balance of being an effective District Representative and a national leader, if he comes the Virgin Islands (VI) next Premier in 2015.

On  27, June 2014 our Team of Reporters caught up with the VIP Chairman Hon. Fraser paying some attention to his District at the Annual Prize Giving Ceremony for the Ebenezer Thomas Primary School class of 2014. Teachers, Students and Parents showered Hon. Fraser with praises for being there for the school over the last 14 plus years.

At Large vs District Leader

All who have served in the Virgin Islands’ political history as both a District Representative and a Party or Government Leader knows the delicate balance one has to do, in not neglecting your District but also not ignoring the needs of the country in general.

While some political observers have stated that former Deputy Premier R. Dancia Penn QC (R8) may have neglected her District to focus on the country, it had cost her the District seat in the 2011 General Elections.

Many have done it before and done it well, both doing for their District while doing for the country. History will confirm that all Virgin Islands Chief Ministers and Premier had come from a District except one and no one can dispute a District Head of Government record of building the VI.

The great stalwarts of building the Virgin Islands came from the Districts, the likes of late Chief Ministers H. Lavity Stoutt (R1) Willard Wheatley MBE, LLD (R8) Cyril B. Romney (R5) and the first Premier of the VI Honourable Ralph T. O’Neal OBE (R9).

Their contributions to the Territory are edged in our history; one thinks of H. Lavity Stoutt who represented the First District for 38 years [1957-1995], and has been the architect of the modern VI therefore, one will cement that there is no conflict between being from a District and being a country’s Leader.

As the name of a former Chief Minister Cyril B. Romney is called one thinks of the Offshore Financial and Tourist sectors, today the main industries of the VI, our bread and butter. Mr. Romney represented the Fifth District for 16 years [1979-1995].

Look at how effective the late Willard Wheatley was for two consecutive terms as Chief Minister [1971-1979], and his legacy including taking the VI out of grant-in-aid and becoming the first Minister of Finance.

The history books do not have enough pages to record the contributions of another District Representative Hon. Ralph T. O’Neal OBE who was a Chief Minister and became the first Premier. He will go down in history for building not only the modern Virgin Gorda and Anegada but protecting the Financial Services sector and giving us a London Office when the National Democratic Party voted against it.

Today, the benefits of that office are undisputed, and today even those who were viciously against the establishment of the BVI London House, its greatest critics have come to embrace it, however, and if we were not recording our history might have claimed it as their own.

Hon. O’Neal represented the people of the Ninth District and continues to do so from 1975 to current.

Dr. Smith an At Large Chief Minister/Premier a failure?

So those for their own selfish reasons who will argue that the Chief Minister or Premier must be At Large are flying in the face of history and progress and only seeking their own limited political goals and agenda.

Many will argue that today we have a Premier who was voted for as an At Large Representative in the name of Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, and if one was to stack up his record and performance [2003-2007] 2011- to current, as Chief Minister and Premier against any of the four men coming from the Districts (Stoutt, Romney, Wheatley, O’Neal) in his position one will only conclude that we will rather have a District candidate as the VI Premier.

The critics of Dr. Smith claimed that they cannot point to one thing he has done while in office to cement his legacy this time or before, after being voted for by all the people, however that is not for this news site to judge. All we know is that the District system remains the best hope for development, progress, inclusion, and prosperity of the Virgin Islands as history has already cemented this as a fact!

The Westminster System of Parliamentary Democracy with District Representatives who lead both their political parties and Governments have worked in some 60 countries some as big as Canada, South Africa, Australia, Jamaica, India and the United Kingdom while some as small as Lesotho, Papua New Guinea and St. Lucia.

So those who are claiming that Hon. Julian Fraser will not make a good Premier because he is from a District may have to go back to the history books and maybe today on Territory Day [June 30, 2014] may be a good time to start your research and see the Leaders whom have built this country and how they were elected.

43 Responses to “Should the Premier be elected At-Large or from a District? ”

  • vip (30/06/2014, 15:20) Like (14) Dislike (15) Reply
    The at large system was set up to get rid of the vip
    • sea weed (30/06/2014, 19:29) Like (9) Dislike (14) Reply
      Too bad for dem becuse we putting back the vip in 2015
      • Scot (01/07/2014, 04:25) Like (17) Dislike (5) Reply
        If Frazer was half the man you seem to think he is he would put himself up at large for the whole country to decide. He knows he can win SCB by importing all those non tax payers from St Thomas. Let him put himself before ALL the electorate and then we would see if he is truly a national leader or just SCB's poodle.
        • farmer brown (01/07/2014, 07:49) Like (10) Dislike (5) Reply
          Without fraser the country dead in the water and even the ndp will tell you that privatly
  • Real (30/06/2014, 15:37) Like (25) Dislike (6) Reply
    GO SIT DOWN, REMEMBER HAD YOU BITING YOUR TOE NAILS . NOW WANT TO FOOL THE YOUNG VOTERS THAT YOU ARE FOR THE YOUTH, YOUR SEED WOULD GROW, NEXT ELECTION IM GOING CHECK YOU OUT WITH A NO VOTE
    • @ Real (01/07/2014, 00:58) Like (12) Dislike (18) Reply
      Julian Fraser remains the best hope for the BVI….Let's make him the Premier he is much better than Dr. Smith Mark and Myron put together
  • wize up (30/06/2014, 15:49) Like (27) Dislike (28) Reply
    if the premier must be elected from the at large system them fraser can not get to be premier; some of these guys can only get votes from their district
    • @ wize up (01/07/2014, 02:14) Like (6) Dislike (20) Reply
      a decision of startling breadth, why you all aint back off fraser he is the man to run this ting
  • hm (30/06/2014, 16:16) Like (23) Dislike (35) Reply

    Dr. Smith do have a legacy; Stamp duty Scandal, Ports project Scandal, pushing out locals for expats and whites, a party for the rich, allegation of correction and reckless spending of millions and millions and more, attacking and censoring the media, globe hoping on tax payers dime, victimization of civil servants and pushing out who did not vote NDP, conflict of interest, l..s and propaganda!....oh and I forget giving his .... a contract

  • my two cents (30/06/2014, 16:29) Like (10) Dislike (7) Reply
    I say get rid of the at large and turn jvd and Anegada in two Districts and have 11 we can save money
    • vi (30/06/2014, 20:31) Like (1) Dislike (2) Reply
      I agree and break Virgin Gorda into two district and there is the four seats that was once the at-large
  • ABC (30/06/2014, 17:14) Like (15) Dislike (0) Reply
    What the BVIs need are politicians with large hearts and abundance of integrity.
  • Cree (30/06/2014, 17:22) Like (12) Dislike (2) Reply
    The Premier should be elected similar to the US system. A separate election should be held for those persons wishing to be Premier of the Territory
  • Dulcina (30/06/2014, 17:56) Like (27) Dislike (5) Reply
    The article represents that the system has worked very well for the benefit of these Islsands.
    I agree that it is not the system that is the problem. The problem is the man Julian Fraser.
    No problem.
    Obviously we are aware and Julian will not be a reality in any Premiership of these islands


    • Scary Mary (01/07/2014, 02:37) Like (11) Dislike (23) Reply
      Jump high jump low the country have already made up their minds to give Fraser a chance to lead…see how he was elected as VIP chairman in a land slide which is a reflection of how the country feels…get with it as if NDP return to power, it means the UK will take over and many of the locals will have to run for their lives
  • shaw (30/06/2014, 17:58) Like (43) Dislike (5) Reply
    I hate to say it but Fraser is starting off full of ego and self-importance. I was really hoping he would be a little more humble after being elected. People may get so turned off they won't vote at all and NDP will return, all because of ego.
    • @ shaw (01/07/2014, 02:40) Like (13) Dislike (39) Reply
      Ha ha lol lol the NDP lies and propaganda and paid bloggers at work...Fraser is the most humble man in the BVI and has always been…no done deal and he listens and he does not promote a culture of disrespect like ball haeded
    • LCS (02/07/2014, 15:15) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      I agree. But he is who he is, He ain't going to change....
  • Jamie (30/06/2014, 18:15) Like (10) Dislike (1) Reply
    That would be the only way Frazier wins Premeirship
  • we the people (30/06/2014, 19:11) Like (31) Dislike (44) Reply
    Cant wait for fraser to be our next premier how long not long
  • 2VIP (30/06/2014, 19:13) Like (13) Dislike (6) Reply

    Come on, if this guy is so good why dont he let the country decide? For too long he has been getting away with c..p and his people has sheltered him. We will like to have a say in the matter. Personally I think Andrew will be a person for the job and he will carry the country with him even if he runs at large

  • vi (30/06/2014, 20:35) Like (1) Dislike (10) Reply
    4 to 1 is not a good comparison.
  • hog city (30/06/2014, 22:13) Like (8) Dislike (6) Reply
    This is the man to take the ndp claws off ah we.
  • jo black (30/06/2014, 22:45) Like (27) Dislike (6) Reply
    Go an sit ya azź down wa kind a stupid question is this the day a premier is selected by district we begin to run a communist country like cuba
    • rattie (01/07/2014, 07:34) Like (6) Dislike (5) Reply
      Dr smith weakness and poor performance has made the at large system look bad
  • shaw (30/06/2014, 22:51) Like (4) Dislike (2) Reply

    of the two VIP, at least Andrew doesn't s...t as much. just think about a royal dinner or international event. Which one would you rather have represent the country with graciousness and no c...y humor. With all due respect, Dr Smith was the perfect front man because he is basically noble. Too bad he surrounds himself with v...res.

  • ... (01/07/2014, 01:23) Like (14) Dislike (5) Reply
    Anyone except the NDP for sure!
  • xxxxxxxx (01/07/2014, 02:26) Like (11) Dislike (34) Reply

    One of the biggest nightmare of the NDP is that Julian Frazer will be the Premier next election…just live with it man it’s inevitable
  • Blug (01/07/2014, 04:32) Like (6) Dislike (7) Reply
    Correct me if I am wrong but all those leaders where elected when there were no at large members. Only Uncle came from a district to be premier during the at large era. Did Uncle make a good job of his time? The electorate threw his party out! We need a national leader who has the support of the majority of ALL the electorate - not just one district. Only an at large member has no district pressures or bias.
  • asura (01/07/2014, 07:32) Like (7) Dislike (5) Reply
    Just know if the ndp get back in the uk will take over the bvi
    • Kingfish (01/07/2014, 14:09) Like (2) Dislike (3) Reply
      @asura:

      There will be no BVI for the UK to take over if Mr. Fraser should become the next premier.
  • ccc (01/07/2014, 07:50) Like (13) Dislike (5) Reply
    Fraser fraser fraser fraser the god of the bvi our nelson mandelar our hero on the white horse get with it people
  • it should be (01/07/2014, 07:52) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    It should be from the At Large system....no one district should elect a premier which is what would basically happen if Frazer were to win....the 3rd district does not talk for the whole BVI...
    • @ it should be (01/07/2014, 08:51) Like (9) Dislike (5) Reply
      U wicked bad minded rass was not saying that when you wanted Dancia as Premier. How come this was never an issue when Uncle was Premier or Lavity, Cyril or Willard was Chief????…Come on get with it our move out the way Julian Fraser our god will be the next Premier
  • james (01/07/2014, 09:19) Like (5) Dislike (2) Reply
    Whatever happens the NDP will loose the next election. Everyone thought they would do a better job this time around but this has not been the case. People are tired of the same old same old. We need openess and transparency. I was thinking about the Port Development Project and the decision to allow person to invest. They is clearly decision for the BVI Investment Club.
  • cay (01/07/2014, 09:47) Like (6) Dislike (2) Reply
    Dem could blog all the hate dem want but ain't not stopping fraser now
  • yellow (01/07/2014, 11:04) Like (8) Dislike (2) Reply
    they said last election that Fraser will loose he won, they said he will not win the chairmanship of the vip he won...now they saying he will not be premier they will be wrong again
  • just asking...... (01/07/2014, 11:23) Like (5) Dislike (3) Reply
    Why is this government so afraid of the truth that we are sick of the corruption and cronyism??? and that Fraser and the VIP are the only TEAM that can bring about a change?
  • ta ta (01/07/2014, 12:51) Like (3) Dislike (3) Reply
    Ndp must go fraser must come


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