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UPDATE: Louis Potter to act as Chairman of BVICCHA

- BVICCHA Board accepts resignations of Exec. Director & President
The BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA) has informed that in the interim and pending the BVICCHA's annual general meeting to be held in March 2014, the Board has appointed Mr Louis Potter, CCM (centre, back row) as Chairman. Photo: Facebook
Chairman of the British Virgin Islands Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA) Attorney Jamal S. Smith has resigned from his post in the organisation. This follows on the heels of the resignation of Executive Director Mrs Doris Smith-Scatliffe. Photo: VINO/File
Chairman of the British Virgin Islands Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA) Attorney Jamal S. Smith has resigned from his post in the organisation. This follows on the heels of the resignation of Executive Director Mrs Doris Smith-Scatliffe. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- In what was first reported by Virgin Islands News Online on December 6, 2013 the BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA) has confirmed that its Executive Director Ms Doris Smith-Scatliffe and President Jamal S. Smith have tendered their resignations, which have been accepted.

In a statement issued to the media today, the Board of Directors of the BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA) said it has regretfully accepted the resignation of its director Mrs Doris Scatliffe.

“During the term of her service to the BVICCHA, Mrs. Scatliffe has made a meaningful contribution to its stability and advancement through the administration of its major programs such as the Culinary Team dinners, The Buy BVI Trade Show, the Spring Regatta and its publication "Experience the BVI". The members of the Board express their sincere thanks to Mrs Scatliffe and wish her all the best in her future endeavors,” the press release stated.

It also confirmed that the Board of Directors has also accepted the resignation of its chairman Jamal S. Smith. “The members of the Board also express it’s thanks to Mr. Smith for his term of service and wishes him all the best in his future endeavors.”

Louis Potter to act as Chairman

The BVICCHA press release informed that in the interim and pending the BVICCHA's annual general meeting to be held in March 2014, the Board has appointed Mr Louis Potter, CCM as Chairman.

“Mr. Potter is a retired career Civil Servant and a committed community advocate, now businessman with over 30 years of management experience as the Chief Planner of the Town and Country Planning Department under the Premier's portfolio. We look forward to working closely with him as the BVICCHA seeks to represent the members of the business community on the many significant challenges it faces in these challenging times,” the press release stated.

See previous story posted December 6, 2013

Shake up at BVICCHA! Jamal S. Smith & Doris Smith-Scatliffe resign

-Both resignations from the BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association are in effect

In a bold move that has sent shock waves throughout the Virgin Islands business community, Chairman of the British Virgin Islands Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA) Attorney Jamal S. Smith and the group’s Executive Director Mrs Doris Smith-Scatliffe have both resigned from their posts in the organisation.

Attorney Smith made the announcement in an ‘E-mail’ statement to members of the organization. The message said, "we recently received the resignation of our Executive Director, Mrs Doris Smith-Scatliffe, and the Board of Directors wished her well in her new endeavors as her year with us ended last month. Additionally, it is after grave consideration that I too tender my resignation as Chairman with immediate effect," the statement, obtained exclusively by Virgin Islands News Online, stated.

Smith's resignation is effective December 5, 2013 and Smith-Scaliffe's November 30, 2013.

Political battle within BVICCHA

Mr Smith, a prominent local Attorney and indigenous Virgin Islander with his own law firm, went on to say that “while I have tried constantly to shield the members and the public image of this organisation from the harsh political battles that exist within this organisation, there comes a moment when it is necessary to fight back. On 7 December 2012 at the opening of the Buy BVI Trade Expo, I addressed the very reason for having the Expo, which is to discourage the constant outflow of capital from our economy, but the strong political divisions resulted in a lack of support for the Buy BVI Trade Show as long as I continue to be associated with the BVICCHA.

Unfortunately, on 20 March 2013 when I gave welcome remarks at our luncheon reception for the new Director of Tourism, I spoke about all the things that the BVICCHA and the Tourist Board could work together for the betterment of our membership yet the single comment that drew the ire of the political establishment was my call for a Commission of Inquiry into the Cruise Pier Project, and now that it has become undeniable that I was right to be suspicious about that project, the political divide grew even stronger resulting in a failed coup d’état within the Board of Directors.”

Criticism of the NDP over bogus ‘robust’ claim

Mr Smith’s statement went on to say, “I expressed the hope that 2013 would be a better year for businesses and noted that with proper economic planning we could have seen the worst part of the economic downturn behind us, but unfortunately the strategy for getting to that point was never realized by our government who continued to insist that the economy was ‘robust’ despite growing job losses, business closures and bank foreclosures.

My criticism of the Premier’s ‘robust’ economy again drew fire from the political establishment and now rather than allow this to cripple the organisation, I believe it is in the best interest of everyone to fight for my country from outside the BVICCHA and shake off the shackles that have kept me from speaking frankly and freely. Without the things that have constrained me, I can now be free to speak.”

Tribute to the late Nelson Mandela

Mr Smith, the brilliant and outspoken lawyer, told the members of the BVICCHA that “as I join with South Africans and people around the world to mourn the death of the world’s greatest hero of the latter quarter of the last century, Nelson Mandela, I look at my personal autographed copy of his autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom, which I obtained when I met him in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1999 in which he said:

‘A freedom fighter learns the hard way that it is the oppressor who defines the nature of the struggle, and the oppressed is often left no recourse but to use methods that mirror those of the oppressor. At a point, one can only fight fire with fire.’”

Immediate Past Chairman of the BVICCHA Mr Smith and former Executive Director Mrs Smith-Scatliffe could not be reached for comments as of post time. 

However, a source close to the organization accused certain members of the organisation’s leadership of allegedly being partisans and instruments of the ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) and saw their roles as there to defend the failed economic policies of the NDP.  

This has contributed, the source said, to making both officers [Smith and Scatliffe] tenure very difficult. 

33 Responses to “UPDATE: Louis Potter to act as Chairman of BVICCHA”

  • pat (06/12/2013, 09:08) Like (2) Dislike (18) Reply
    well saw thoes ndp wicked cowbirds now speak your mind jamal
    • GoonSquad (06/12/2013, 13:13) Like (9) Dislike (2) Reply

      Strupppss man, it's time both of them be gone..

      • The REAL GoonSquad (07/12/2013, 09:29) Like (2) Dislike (7) Reply
        ndp is evil but we going deal with them next elections
    • the real pat (19/12/2013, 00:08) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      I hope Louis Potter is better at this than he was as head of town and country for 30 yrs. He knows how to develop but doesn't know how to preserve or protect the environment. I hope as part of the hotel sector he gets to know how to do that too.
      • dog (19/12/2013, 11:24) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
        so does that mean he will give up his "consulting business" when it comes to development?
  • ooooo (06/12/2013, 09:54) Like (4) Dislike (18) Reply
    when will this north korean style of victimization stop?...these ndp's are a dangerous set of people...them got to go!
  • Kweenie (06/12/2013, 10:09) Like (9) Dislike (15) Reply
    No surprise here NDP is the party of censorship and victimization
  • YAWN (06/12/2013, 10:11) Like (23) Dislike (8) Reply
    What is his track record? Let's see it.. Pure nonsense. If you going to run for election just get on with it, we don't need the lecture. You, Rajah, Zoe and Irene for VIP At-Large? More licks than kunta kinte on a sunny day in those days.
    • Press Release (06/12/2013, 10:35) Like (0) Dislike (9) Reply
      "Mr Smith, the brilliant and outspoken lawyer, told the members of the BVICCHA that ..."

      :)
  • m$. p (06/12/2013, 10:35) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    @ YAWN More licks than kunta kinte on a sunny day in those days.

    Thats funny.
  • Madiba says (06/12/2013, 10:37) Like (4) Dislike (10) Reply
    Jamal u speak the truth and set ur heart free.
  • Non Political (06/12/2013, 11:17) Like (17) Dislike (10) Reply
    Mark,Orlando, Myron and the NDP Government as well as Fraser is a disgrace to the BVI and therefore we need to vote them out immediately
  • weed (06/12/2013, 15:08) Like (8) Dislike (4) Reply
    these ndp want to kill anybody who does not agree with them
    • too late (06/12/2013, 19:02) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
      Now see, that's exactly what VIP has been doing for years. So if both parties are killing us, who will lead? We have no one in office that we want so we are stuck with 2 rotten eggs. At this point I guess it doesn't matter who gets in, they are the same. I have lost faith in our leaders.
  • two waste (06/12/2013, 15:55) Like (4) Dislike (4) Reply
    comwell and chris job is to protect the ndp at all cost
  • one eye roster (07/12/2013, 09:07) Like (2) Dislike (8) Reply
    This man Jamal is such an inspiration. We should all emulate and try to be like him, as he has courage but most of us are afraid of victimization
  • tell the truth (07/12/2013, 09:15) Like (2) Dislike (3) Reply
    This is an example of shallow thinking by the NDP for not supporting the trade expo
  • mvw (07/12/2013, 09:21) Like (7) Dislike (5) Reply
    NDP useless politicians were mad and felt threaten by Mr. Smith because they could not pull the wool over his eyes.
  • dem say (07/12/2013, 09:32) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    Very good and to the point opinion piece from you mr. smith tell them like it is
  • dudeska (07/12/2013, 11:52) Like (9) Dislike (3) Reply
    Excellent Article! the voters still weeps for returning the NDP...
  • Smelling a rat (09/12/2013, 21:18) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Of course it has nothing to do with the fact they were crap at running the bviccha! It is a not for profit orginisation with a limited budget, not one where you can spend all the money! It has nothing to do with ndp.
  • Hmmmm (18/12/2013, 16:20) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Here we go with the f..ing acting position again.....f...k it jack
  • Virgin Son (18/12/2013, 16:28) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    pure politics potter is an NDP I have no more respect for this organization
    • Truth (19/12/2013, 06:57) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      This is payback for all the nonsensical speeches he wrote for the doc. Ting de talk! Can't run they own affairs...
  • small business (18/12/2013, 16:43) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    too much NDP politicks I will withdraw my company membership
  • backwards (18/12/2013, 17:25) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    If he run dey like he ran tcp then we in trouble
  • for sure (18/12/2013, 20:50) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Jamal after this acting appointment you are missed now than ever before
  • Look Teeth (19/12/2013, 06:29) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply

    V*** is in every thing now that NDP in but when VIP he going run from BVI. LOL!



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