BVI News

Another march: Anti-corruption protest against gov’t planned

Another protest is being planned; this time against alleged corruption in the British Virgin Islands government.

Businessman Floyd ‘Heritage’ Burnett said the march has been scheduled for Friday, June 8. He made the announcement during a radio programme on ZBVI last evening, May 29.

According to Burnett, the march will start at 2pm in the vicinity of the Sunday Morning Well and end at the Central Administration Complex in Road Town. He said a full programme will follow at the Breezeway.

Responding to the cries of the masses 

Burnett said the march is a response to the cries of local residents.

“We have been listening to the cries and the concerns of the people for a long time. We have been saying we have certain domestic issues that definitely needs addressing. We have lost our transparency, we have lost our open dialogue,” he said.

“Last week we took to the streets and we protested the United Kingdom (UK) and myself and many others thought: ‘what better way to make a truthful stance by saying we don’t condone the leadership abroad from those locally?’ Now that it has passed, it is still left to address the issues at home.”

He said organisers have already applied to the relevant authorities to hold what he described as a ‘peaceful’ march to protest the various issues affecting the country.

“We basically want it to be a day of dialogue; a day for the public. There is no censorship here,” he added.

The government will have their say

Meanwhile, Burnett said government officials will also have an opportunity to speak to the concerns of protesters.

If they fail to address the people’s concerns, Governor Augustus Jaspert will be officially called on to intervene, “to open a commission of inquiry to our issues and seek justice” on behalf of taxpayers,” he further said.

A commission of inquiry is a systematic investigation that is often of a matter of public interest.

Not at war with Government 

Burnett said he wanted to make it clear he is not against any member of the government.

“We are not at war with anybody. We just want to keep the democracy healthy and open. Have an open dialogue with the people. We are long overdue for a conversation on accountability, clarity, about the various misspending, the unaudited tax dollars. These are our rights.”

Burnett further said the invitation to protest is open to every member of the public including civil servants, students, and the religious community.

“We also will be calling on the Governor Augustus Jaspert. We want the civil servants to have the date off so they can express their constitutional rights even if it was the very mould in the building that they were subdued to; even if you feel you are underpaid, or your department could function better,” he said.

Similarly, Burnett said students should be allowed to get the afternoon off to join the march.

“Last week, they expressed their voice to the UK so I want every child to know that you have the right to march for the sewerage in the road.”

Importantly, Burnett said he hopes the protest will ‘send a strong and clear message’ that the people of the territory will not tolerate bad governance from the UK or our local authorities.

The May 24 Decison March

On May 24, hundreds turned out to participate in the BVI’s Decision March against the UK.

The march signalled the territory’s displeasure towards UK legislators for using what is being described as “constitutional overreach” to pass an amendment to their Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act — a law that is feared will cripple the BVI’s main revenue earner, the financial services.

Addressing protestors, Deputy Premier Dr Kedrick Pickering described the march as a declaration of war by the territory on the UK.

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  1. forgive us Lord says:

    the march is too early I will want to march in this one, when working certain places you can’t get time off for things like this

  2. Interesting says:

    This guy always calling down the UK, Queen and their system but will be calling on the UK appointed Governor for action against his people. I think this youth is a bit misguided.

  3. Political Observer (PO) says:

    The timing is off on this march; the causes and window of opportunity was there to march but it was missed. The march to protest the action approved by both HC and HL suck all the interest/oxygen for marching out of air for now. The causes still exist so the electorate needs to exercise their constitutional right and march to polls and vote their conscience.

    They must demand transparency, accountability, responsibility, fiduciary responsibility, effective stewardship of resources………etc not just by talk and hope but by action, peaceful action.

  4. Answers says:

    We the people demand accountability! We the people demand the release of the last several years of government audits that have been hidden from us! We the people demand to know where our $7,000,000.00 Airline is! We the people demand to know how our ministers became so rich when they have been in public service their whole life! We the people demand answers!

    • Demanding Nonsense ! says:

      FYI … most of our ministers, and government officials come from wealthy families , AND HAVE THEIR OWN PERSONAL BUSINESSES that they get money from ! Almost all of them . So before you imply that they are stealing from us , check that out .

      • Rubber Duck says:

        There are smarter ways of stealing than sticking your hand in the cookie jar.

      • Lol says:

        Some didn’t get their big bank loans until AFTER elections. Some stores were empty like a dancehall and were hurting. Some had other ‘off the books’ funding to keep them going! Check how many of them have NEW businesses since they got elected & how many of those said businesses are doing work/services with government!!! Blind set of plebs trolling the net everyday…smdh…

      • The Accountant says:

        Great, then you don’t mind being audited personally? Every elected official should submit a financial disclosure form and agree not to take kickbacks or interests in public projects. Right?

      • @ Demanding Nonsense! says:

        Like contracted work?

  5. Reality says:

    You won’t get any Civil Servants in that one!

  6. Interested says:

    Bring evidence of corruption and I will March with you,If you have none just shut the hell up and go sit down.

    • You want the truth? says:

      Look no further than BVI Airways! There is your proof!

      • Proof says:

        There is no proof of corruption or would have already been presented by political opportunist trying to get their glory.Some bad decisions were made by the present government like the airline deal but in good faith.When changes of corruption are made there better be proof that would stand up in any court of law or be quiet.Both NDP and VIP have made their share of mistakes.The people will not be hoodwinked.Bring proof of corruption,list names of people,dates accounts and the like so changes can be made. I then will be the first to march.

        • BVI says:

          We have a practice of convicting individuals in the court of public opinion bakes Jeremy on hearsay rather than on proof or evidence which is dangerous. It’s the mentality of we black people and small isnaders. No wonder we can’t get ahead. We thrive on destroying each other while other races are uniting and forging ahead.

        • Truth says:

          Show me the audit and there thou shall find the truth. Show me the names on the register and there thou shall find the truth.

        • John the Baptist says:

          You want proof? Force the ministers to reveal the terms behind the BVI Airways deal. You want proof? Follow the money on the pier project. You want the proof? You can’t handle the proof.

          • @ John the Baptist says:

            Preach it brother! The Lord will do the revealing this year. You watch in this country…if this country is to return to holiness…what is hidden in the darkness and darkest places MUST come to light.

    • Bystander says:

      Does no audits for 5 years; a budget of around $250-300 million a year and shockingly bad infrastructure count as evidence? Or is it incredible incompetence? I’d be interested to know the answer.

      • Kenneth Dreger says:

        If there is so much corruption going on why do you folks keep electing them? Just asking….not taking sides…

  7. true says:

    seems like a joke this one, it takes more than 10 days to set up a march and protest about the government.

    Take ferry schedules into account, also there is no way the government is giving another day off to its staff to protest against itself and no way the schools are getting out early either

    This seems set up to fail, perhaps a NDP stooge to show there is no protest against the government

  8. concern says:

    Bring C.S.Clyne in the march he need to be there.

  9. Much Respect says:

    But I am not at all familiar with the leader Floyd Burnett or any person or family in the BVI wth this surname, I would need to know something about him so a brief bio would assist in making a decision for me to follow him , No disrespect intended.

    • haa says:

      local — man

    • @much respect says:

      Respect is earn in this case D—-! No one is asking you to follow a last name. So yes those who organized the first march used TAX payers money one way or another to do their placards and banners and many came out to support even though they boldly said in your faces they don’t need the FS Industry to survive but now a brother is marching for the rights to transparency, accountability, and good governancE for we the common man and poor people and you want to question or ridicule him because of his name???? How dear you!

      We marching and we want them OUT!

    • Albion says:

      If you Google him a couple of links come up. He describes himself as a community activist.

      Is he any relation to Angela Burnett?

    • Change says:

      Why don’t you go hear him speak to decide whether he is worth following? His family shouldn’t matter when it comes to leading, only his message.

    • Understood says:

      He is the guy who does the car raffles for Tola Radio VI apparently.

    • Google search says:

      He’s the owner of Tola Radio VI radio station.

  10. Sam the man says:

    Many are fed up with the inept Government we have…however we have to take some responsibility for permitting them with getting away with stuff for so long…we haven’t held them to account and keep voting them back in! every significant Government scheme goes over budget, takes much longer than it should – but ministers are adept at covering their tracks. The reason the oversight by the UK on the advantageous loan rate was demanded and then resisted by the No Direction Party is because it stifles their nepotism, back handers and alleged corruption….instead of a march which I’m sure will be better attended than the last circus gathering I’d suggest a public gathering where speakers can present the arguments/issues and hold the Government to account…But lets face it our Premier is the Finance minister and he has failed to declare proper audited annual finance reports every single year he has been in charge and we have let him get away with it! The first question should be – when will you publish the audited financial yearly statements? and ask for a firm commitment… wonder the UK have acted the way they have with legislation to improve transparency in the finance sector – we have only ourselves to blame….

  11. Lucy says:

    Since Pickering declared war on the UK, if he is arrested
    will he be treated as a prisoner of war?

  12. Anti war protest says:

    Let’s all chat together ….

    Hey, Hey
    Ho, Ho
    P———–’s got to go!

    Hey, Hey
    Ho, Ho
    P———–’s got to go!

    Hey, Hey
    Ho, Ho
    P————-’s got to go!

    Kinda catchy…

  13. Wow says:

    Specifically designed to fail.

  14. Jane says:

    I am not sure whether the politicians are corrupt or simply incompetent. For sure the good Doctor is out of his depth since the hurricane. These little islands have a proud history of protest, people need to be marching when you have people still living in shelters and tents, kids going to school in split shifts or in tents, sh1t running through the streets, “accidental” fires starting on makeshift dump, audits not being produced, capital projects started but not finished due to political posturing, planes being stolen and no action being taken. As a non-belonger I would be too scared to march in protest as I could be kicked off island, but I am there in spirit with those that do.

    • hmm says:

      why be scared? you too are protected by the provisions relating to freedom of speech and expression in our constitution. Exercise your rights!

      • Jane says:

        I wish it were so. Non-BVIslanders live in a continual threat of being kicked off island. We are reminded constantly that we aren’t born here, we don’t “belong”, we’re guests privileged to be allowed to reside here. Immigration Officers make threats all the time, they love to wield their power over us. No way would I publically dissent. I would like to get involved in politics here, to contribute to the society of which I am grateful to be a part but in reality I don’t think that involvement would be appreciated and people would say I am meddling in affairs which don’t concern me. so I can blog and complain, but cannot make any positive change. And of course I have no power to exercise my views at the ballot box.

      • CW says:

        You think corrupt officials will let you exercise your rights? Good luck with that

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