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‘The rug was pulled from under us’- Hon Ronnie W. Skelton

-Hon Lorna G. Smith, OBE blamed for unilaterally derailing Opposition plans to form gov’t
Hon Ronnie W. Skelton has indicated that his party never saw it coming that Mrs Smith would defect given the Opposition has a majority in the House of Assembly (HoA) and was already on the path to forming the Government. Photo: Facebook
NDP chairman Hon Marlon A. Penn (R8) said a time was already set for the three party leaders to meet and discuss moving forward as a government, ahead of Mrs Lorna G. Smith teaming up with the VIP. Photo: Facebook
NDP chairman Hon Marlon A. Penn (R8) said a time was already set for the three party leaders to meet and discuss moving forward as a government, ahead of Mrs Lorna G. Smith teaming up with the VIP. Photo: Facebook
Hon Julian Fraser said in his discussion with the VIP, he told them that the only way he would work with the party under Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley, was if he could be Premier. Photo: Facebook/File
Hon Julian Fraser said in his discussion with the VIP, he told them that the only way he would work with the party under Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley, was if he could be Premier. Photo: Facebook/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI– Opposition Members across the Progressive Virgin Islands Movement (PVIM), National Democratic Party (NDP) and Progressives United (PU) have claimed they were blindsided by Hon Lorna G. Smith, OBE (AL) who defected from the NDP and formed a Government with the Virgin Islands Party (VIP) on April 25, 2023.

In a joint Opposition press conference today, April 27, 2023, with leaders and elected members of the three parties, it was revealed that during negotiations and talking between the three parties, Mrs Smith made the announcement that she would join with the VIP. 

Parties were negotiating when rug was pulled- Hon Skelton

“We had negotiations between the three leaders... while we were negotiating, the rug was pulled from under us, that's the reason we are not in government,” Chairman of PVIM Hon Ronnie W. Skelton (AL) told the press today.

His indication was that the party never saw it coming that Mrs Smith would defect, given the Opposition has a majority in the House of Assembly (HoA) and was already on the path to forming the Government.

NDP chairman Hon Marlon A. Penn (R8) said a time was already set for the three party leaders to meet and discuss moving forward as a government, ahead of Mrs Smith joining the VIP. 

“While those discussions were being had, a decision was made, as we learned during that discussions, was made by Hon Lorna Smith to form an alliance with the Virgin Islands Party,” he added.

No discussion with Hon Smith on teaming up with VIP - Hon Penn 

“I want to make it very clear to the public, that at no time was this discussed in terms of what the decision was made by her,” he said while adding that suggestions were made by Mrs Smith concerning a possible alliance with the VIP, however, it was decided that discussions would be had with the PU and PVIM.

Hon Penn added that steps are also being taken to deal with Mrs Smith’s decision in the swiftest possible way. 

Meanwhile, PU Chairman Hon Julian Fraser, RA said after monitoring the count of votes and moving to his party headquarters, he already had discussions with the two leaders of the PU and PVIM on a strategy for the elections. 

He added that in his discussion with the VIP, he told them that the only way he would work with the party under Dr the Hon Natalio D. Wheatley, was is if he could be Premier.

Nevertheless, the Opposition Members have vowed to hold the government accountable in the House of Assembly. 

55 Responses to “‘The rug was pulled from under us’- Hon Ronnie W. Skelton”

  • Blind Man (27/04/2023, 17:06) Like (79) Dislike (9) Reply
    Ronnie I have nothing personal against you or your team, but in all honesty you along with your members don't have what it takes to move the BVI forward on your campaign all you all did was find fault of the VIP when in fact you and your team never give a solution as to how you will fix the infrastructure or even outline a plan to improve the tourism within the BVI which so many people depend on for a living. Let's be real no system is perfect VIP members at first were new to politics now they are season this time around they deserve a second chance as an opposition member your your job is not just to oppose but to advise also. We want good governance from all sides.
    • Strupez (27/04/2023, 19:54) Like (51) Dislike (10) Reply
      Tell Ronnie kick rocks. I felt like the rug was pulled from under me when you forced NHI down my throat. Stop the wining.
    • Ratchedness (27/04/2023, 20:05) Like (31) Dislike (6) Reply
      Could someone anyone even a PIGEON let Cindy know she’s NOT a journalist.

      The REAL REPORTERS put her to SHAME.

      Always has an axe to grind, personal agenda, vendetta.

      When she told Hon. Skelton “Your people love me…” and that’s why she was in the room backstabbing the country with Lorna so to speak shows that she’ll latch on to anyone for personal gain.
  • Wonders Never Cease (27/04/2023, 17:09) Like (60) Dislike (9) Reply
    Imagine these big boys in big men's body out there crying? Ohhh my goodness!!! You mean you guys were campaining that you all were going to kick out the green, even advertizing "Put them out". Election result was know around 10 PM on April 24, up till 1:00pm on April 25, you guys could not finalize your plan, and you guys want to blame Hon. Lorna Smith? Come on guys, get out of this blame game. Did you guys forget who her brother is? the action man? Well she proved that she too is an action woman..

    Hail, Lorna Smith. Had she not done this, you guys would probably still be around table negotiating or may Governor would have stepped in Well done action woman, 3 cheers to you. A big hand shake and hug to you. Well done. These guys should be apologizing to the population and even kicking themselves in their butt and not blame the action woman.
  • WOW (27/04/2023, 17:09) Like (11) Dislike (2) Reply
    Lies lies
  • TruDat! (27/04/2023, 17:13) Like (29) Dislike (6) Reply
    That's a boss move by the boss lady, no doubt. My strongest hope is that we will now get a proper opposition that challenges what needs to be challenged and stop nonsense and crime from getting through the HoA. Stay angry and keep both eyes open.
  • bigger picture (27/04/2023, 17:28) Like (24) Dislike (1) Reply
    While we are focusing on political party alliance the UK are waiting and gearing up to take over the government. When that happens there would be no party to align oneself. Please let us focus on correcting policies and not be worried about what political party is in power. The people don't care about what party is in power because the UK government dont care about it. What we care about is if the job at hand is being done for the best interests of the Virgin Islands and its people. Can we do headlines with the implementation of policies rather than this nonsense you want to be focusing on??
  • Poor fellas (27/04/2023, 17:29) Like (48) Dislike (6) Reply
    That press conference looked like a funeral as if someone died. I presume what died was the participants hopes and dreams
    Was in reached only to be snatch away by Lorna.

    They say she did so unilaterally and snatch the rug from under their feet. By there appearances they looked quite injured and may need to visit the hospital.

    Its a sad day for them. Could you imagine dreaming of becoming the Premier only to have that dream snatch away from you when you were so close?

    I feel their pain. May they find solace in having each other and take comfort in being in the opposition. Sending you my thoughts and prayers.
  • Magician (27/04/2023, 17:34) Like (48) Dislike (5) Reply
    Lorna in your corner said abracadabra hocus-pocus, let me join VIP so the country can stay focus.

    Six men of egotistical mentality hungry for power and the cheese was taken from right under their noses for being so damn naive.

    I said it before and I’ll say it again. Ronnie is not the man for this time nor will he be. He is not articulate with his words hence his self expression is limited in the English language. Most of you have him as some kind of guru in finance but he can’t even count. I was never impressed with the man who insults you when you get into a debate with him one on one and you out do him it gets to his nerves. Seems like an educational deficit problem to me but because many of you see big business you think he build that on his own but luckily for him it was silver spooned aka inherited. The man is just a natural dunce. Fraser is just too damn full of himself and Marlon continues to be the puppet he has always been.
  • Challenge (27/04/2023, 17:35) Like (4) Dislike (18) Reply
    the vote counts in court if the 'new' opposition HOA members are not happy. Judicial Review of the last minute validation act for almost 700 'new' belongers seems like shady politics to insure a VIP majority.
  • WOW (27/04/2023, 17:46) Like (21) Dislike (1) Reply
    So what is this to late time you boys was fighting the lady was making her move NDP 1 and ndp2 you all shame the people of the bvi in your all greedy I say so to many on my friends and they could not believe I say come true they let the country believe they can work together and look what happen as for district 3 you all will put a leader to alway sit on the opposition he better enjoy this last four year greedy so a shame of him he is nothing about county only about himself
  • Really (27/04/2023, 17:49) Like (42) Dislike (1) Reply
    Sir I am happy to know you got a dose of your own medicine… now you know how I felt when you and others broke up NDP.

    All the best to you L**na I am still in your corner don’t listen to the noise. those boys left you out intentionally and never appreciated what you bought to the table. I believe as a woman of excellence this is your time to make a huge impact. After years of contributing in the background. Step out and shine. I will be praying for you, may the Lord guide and direct you, may HIS Face shine upon and give you peace and strength to take on task. May God give you wisdom like Solomon to help guide this nation. Don’t be discourage their are those that are for you and wish you continuous success.

  • Who To Blame? (27/04/2023, 17:57) Like (28) Dislike (1) Reply
    Lashing Dog sang who to blame? Fraser? Lorna? NDP? PVIM? VIP? Well, we cannot blame VIP because all the others had 7 people to form the coalition government right away. They were not supposed to leave the room until it was formed. Saying who negotiated with VIP or if VIP negotiated with anyone of them is a basket caring water. A government was placed in NDP, VIPM, and PU hand. What a shame.

    Right now, everyone looking someone to blame except themselves.
  • Ayo is the set (27/04/2023, 17:58) Like (15) Dislike (5) Reply
    Ayo is the set of power hungry Ms
    Mrs Smith love the BVI
    Ayo couldn’t join before is aftermath ayo was gonna just join to see if ayo could work together
  • Just wondering (27/04/2023, 17:59) Like (22) Dislike (1) Reply
    Why didn't the seven of them make Lorna the Premier and Fraser the Deputy Premier Ronnie the Minister of Finance. Or make Fraser the Premier, Lorna Deputy Premier & Ronnie Minister of Finance. Or Fraser or Ronnie Premier and one Deputy and Lorna a minister. Do not fool us that it couldn't work. Their greed and ego are what stop it from working and their little or no regard for women in power was the blockage. Only themselves they have to blame.
    • Strupes (27/04/2023, 19:47) Like (4) Dislike (11) Reply
      Did I vote for her to be any Premier?
    • @Just wondering (27/04/2023, 20:23) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      Then Mr. CSC prophecy about a woman Premier would have come to pass. He would have been all over the airwaves singing his praises than throwing preschool tantrum.
  • Simple truth (27/04/2023, 18:01) Like (32) Dislike (2) Reply
    Ronnie & Marlon and them could not unite to form a government to build the country but will unite in the opposition to destroy but make it look like they are building it up. SMDH
  • 1st District Woman (27/04/2023, 18:02) Like (26) Dislike (2) Reply
    A set of book sense men with one common sense woman.
  • d3 (27/04/2023, 18:06) Like (28) Dislike (2) Reply
    I told my people do not re-elect Fraser as he is for himself. He supported PVIM but refused to join them and they for sure did not join Fraser PU Party but said they supported him. All of this was about securing votes and not about what is best for the people and country. Their deceitful ways is what confounded them and not Lorna.
  • Boo (27/04/2023, 18:07) Like (27) Dislike (4) Reply
    While the Lion is sleeping the fox is plotting and executing its overthrow. How can you go to a negotiation with a loose alliance and not carry all parties and act swiftly? In such a crucial moment the lady had not heard from you all for several hours and was left with ample opportunity to act.

    Given that before the election neither PVIM nor NDP could agree to work together how could we expect them to work together after? If they had worked together and not duplicated candidates they probably would have picked up the 4th and 9th districts and probably one more at large.

    VIP’s offer to both the NDP and the PVIM in the circumstances was more than generous for either of them to snap it up on the spot. They made their decision by default and inaction and she made hers by choice.
  • To me (27/04/2023, 18:10) Like (14) Dislike (2) Reply
    Ronnie gets more credit than he deserves in the area of leadership, finance, and respect for women in power. His track record in politics shows he failed in all areas but some people good at blinding people to the facts. This time it will not be for long.
  • Could imagine (27/04/2023, 18:12) Like (14) Dislike (0) Reply
    I could only imagine the amount of bad words Ronnie give Lorna behind the scenes because hee has a very fowl mouth.
  • resident (27/04/2023, 18:16) Like (14) Dislike (1) Reply
    All of you are amateurs who got schooled in politics
  • Pure Lies (27/04/2023, 18:19) Like (9) Dislike (2) Reply
    All of them in NDP, PVIM, & PU was trying to make deals on their own with VIP to be in the government, but they send their friends, certain pastor friend, family, brothers, aunts and uncles on their behalf to take the message and bring back the responses. They did not go themselves so they could look like they have integrity, and if it gets out they can say it is not so. The BVI know you all in the Opposition are lying so stop taking the people for fools.
  • Disinterested (27/04/2023, 18:21) Like (25) Dislike (1) Reply
    Something is missing from this story. It seems sanitized. It seems as if they were all negotiating among themselves and with VIP to form a government. Some hypocrisy going on it seems.
  • Stop Ronnie Stoo.. (27/04/2023, 18:27) Like (17) Dislike (1) Reply
    Why were you and Frazer took so long to agree. ? You have failed. Most of the country wanted you to be Premier...From the timr Frazer start acting up. You should have leave him behind and start dealing with Marlon, you all get on the Phone and start calling Vincent, Dawson or Lou and make offers render Frazer useless..
  • Come on (27/04/2023, 18:27) Like (20) Dislike (1) Reply
    The truth is all of you called the VIP individually to negotiate position in government for themselves and the VIP called all of you individually and as a party to negotiate. Just mean the quickest one to the draw won. Ronnie & Marlon them was out foxed by a quicker fox. Now Ronnie them calling the grapes sour because they did not get the grapes. If they had get the grapes, they would have been here singing the grapes sweet.
  • Sowande again.. (27/04/2023, 18:29) Like (20) Dislike (1) Reply
    Ronnie pls admit you all failure, weakness and move on..Its spill milk.. Things are now settled, start working with the Govt, hold them accountable to make the BVI better..
  • Lorna in the corner (27/04/2023, 18:38) Like (26) Dislike (2) Reply
    Them too power hungry Fraser said he must be premier and both Ronnie and Marlon want it too
  • enough (27/04/2023, 18:42) Like (21) Dislike (1) Reply
    It's a done deal. Move on.
  • 2023 (27/04/2023, 18:52) Like (13) Dislike (2) Reply
    try to go sit down: Hon Skeleton your party could only muster up 3 seats so what the problem is: in 2027 let PVIM secure 7 seats and stop the noise

    the same political party you good-guys spoke so unknowingly about turned around and got 6 seats again your 3: as a matter of actual fact they form the ruling administration

    run quickly and chat that
  • Tracks (27/04/2023, 18:54) Like (3) Dislike (15) Reply
    She going run tracks on the VIP. Sowande ain’t no match for Ms. Bossy and Pushy.
  • Real Talk (27/04/2023, 19:29) Like (9) Dislike (0) Reply


  • Final Analysis (27/04/2023, 19:58) Like (16) Dislike (1) Reply
    So they came to an "Amicable agreement" but before they implemented it, the rug was pulled from under them ( Lorna joined the VIP) my questions What was in that agreement?Why did Mr Fraser refuse to disclose what it when he was asked? Did Mr Frazer ask to be Premier like he said he did when the VIP approached him? Why did they stay so long to reach that agreement?According to Mr Marlon they were running an anti- corruption Government. How could that be when certain member who would have made up his Government were accused of corruption? This is not part of the story but since I am asking questions I will ask When would Zan Lewis learn to ask questions that do not blatantly show bias or his personal agenda? He sound so unprofessional at times. I feel embarrassed for him. Kudos to the other journalists for conducting themself in such a professional way. There are so many questions to be asked. Here is one more. Who is telling us the truth?
    • VOTER6BVI (27/04/2023, 21:05) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    • @Final analysis (28/04/2023, 11:49) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
      They all need to come clean and stop telling half truths.

  • Doers get more done (27/04/2023, 20:04) Like (19) Dislike (1) Reply
    The magnificent 7 were handed a gift the BVI electorate and they tripped, stumbled and fell at the finish line! That’s the difference between how the private sector works vs how the government operates. Government is slow, lax and indifferent while the private sector has to make moves. The egos, and approval by special interest in order for you to do your job is glaring. You were elected to GOVERN and if everything you do needs to be approved by whoever “sent” you is a waste of time
    I guess they expected the VIP to commit political suicide by waiting for the 7 to form the gvmt. You snooze, you lose
  • Bigmanbabies (27/04/2023, 20:16) Like (14) Dislike (1) Reply
    Boo whoo whoo!!! The rug was pulled from under us!! Sets of man. By 10 pm that same night you all should have form a Government while Lorna was in her corner. Women are always thinking ahead of as men. When we are asking where it is? They are saying Here it is!!
  • No Plan (27/04/2023, 20:33) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    These guys clearly had no plans to govern the country. They had a whole year to come togather with a plan to govern, did nothing, and blotch a last minute effort. They put two candidates in district 4 and 9 to split their own votes and expected to win.
  • Fraser supporter (27/04/2023, 21:07) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    Fraser you needed a hair cut if they was to put you be primer
  • Looking from the outside (27/04/2023, 21:21) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
  • Dumb dumb (27/04/2023, 21:37) Like (10) Dislike (1) Reply
    Ronnie cannot speak for a Premier he stuttering too much. His vocabulary small can’t find words to express himself. Not fit for President
  • Enuff is too.much. (28/04/2023, 04:47) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    This was the plan all along. Remember Mark and the big head boy. Wa he name. Estridge. It was a slip. They know what they had planned. Ten a vote of no confidence. Meanwhile england looking on like a fat kid looking at chocolate cake waiting for mommy turn her back so he could thief pice and lie about it.
    No? That's not it?
    Ok. Carry on!
  • Chess move (28/04/2023, 08:08) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
    "Hon Penn added that steps are also being taken to deal with Mrs Smith’s decision in the swiftest possible way"

    Marlon, you are out of your league. You just witnessed a demonstration of Lorna's capabilities, do you think she cares about your "steps"? VIP is now her party to tinker with, and I believe she will eventually take it over.
  • facts (28/04/2023, 08:15) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    These guys told alot of half truths in their press conference to make us believe Lorna & not any of them was the problem why they did not form the coalition government. For instance Fraser said he made it clear to the VIP for him to work with them he must be Premier & that was done only after discussions with his colleagues in NDP & PVIM. Simple question to Fraser & the rest of NDP & PVIM members is why did any of them entertain any conversation with VIP and if there was no issue among them then when VIP called as they said, their response was to be we are not interested in any discussions or negotiations with you to form the government because our group on this side is in the process of forming the government. They need to stop taking the people for fools and admit greed took over rather than the best interest of the people & country. Now they are going to unite to try to create many unnecessary conflict, confusion, and chaos like spoiled children who did not get their way. I am already tired & disgusted of what is to come. SMDH.
    • @facts (28/04/2023, 11:58) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
      Well said. Lots of half truths. If they were together, as they say, then they would have negotiated with a united front. They all wanted their piece of the pie, but forgot that Lorna was crucial to them even getting to sit at the table. Now they're angry because she didn't defer to them. The reality is that, with her experience, intelligence, and guts, she stands head and shoulders above most of them.
  • ... (28/04/2023, 10:30) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    Your team and allies and associates called him "Slow man", "Slowande" LMAO Becareful with your disrespect of the Premier, because you wanted to be premier but you had no respect for the position when it wasn't yours. And now it'll never be yours. Who really moved too slow when it mattered?
  • lol (28/04/2023, 13:41) Like (5) Dislike (1) Reply
    So yall didn't call her when yall had ayuh boys meeting. Conveniently left her out. She did what was best for country while yall was divying up the spoils. he K sitting by watching like vultures just waiting and yall playing hop scotch while Lorna ina another corner playing chess.
    Well played maam.
    Wish you the best.
  • Forbidden Truth. (29/04/2023, 06:21) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    None has complain yet but the woman is a liar she lie , she lie, she lie.

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