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‘Inspirational: You’re a rock, Doc’ | Fraser salutes Premier


Chairman of Progressives United (PU) Julian Fraser — a legislator who could be described as one of Premier Dr D Orlando Smith’s greatest critics — this week saluted Dr Smith as a strong government leader.

Dr Smith who served in the local politicals for roughly two decades is not seeking re-election in the February 25 general election.

“Doc, you are something else. Nothing bothers you. You never get rattled. Trust me I tried to rattle you sometimes but you never get rattled. So I have to give you credit for that. You are a rock,” Fraser told Dr Smith moments before the House of Assembly dissolved on Wednesday.

Fraser also commended Dr Smith for doing well in his capacity as Premier and Minister of Finance during ‘difficult times’.

“I have seen you conduct government business under strenuous circumstances especially these last few months. You were an inspiration with that financial services,” said Fraser who is hoping to become the next premier of the Virgin Islands.

Very capable leadership

The politician further said he thinks Dr Smith is very capable and sure about how to handle the financial services trouble bedevilling the territory.

“I sympathize with you because it is out of your control … and I appreciate it,” he told the premier.

Earlier this month, the United Kingdom granted it’s Overseas Territories, including the BVI, something of a reprieve as it relates to implementing what are known as public registers of beneficial ownership.

The UK’s Sanction’s and Anti-Money Laundering Act mandates that the BVI must implement public registers by the year 2020. But in a recent statement, Britain’s minister responsible for Overseas Territory’s Lord Tariq Ahmad said an order mandating that the BVI implement the registers by 2023 will be imposed if the territory misses the 2020 deadline. This means the BVI has the option of going a significant three additional years without implementing the dreaded public registers.

Britain’s 2023 reprieve is speculated by factions of the UK community to be because of efforts from leaders like Premier Smith who threatened to take legal action against the UK.

Fraser, in the meantime, said another area worthy of note was when he and the Premier worked together on the territory’s constitution.

“I noticed the way you dealt with that – calm. And it was somewhat unusual to see a person like you in that role,” Fraser said.

Time to move on

While also making remarks about his departure from politics, Dr Smith said now is an opportune time for him to move on.

“I think it is time for me to look at some other options which I have, and I am satisfied that during the term that I was here I gave it my best.”

Dr Smith added: I know there is a lot more that could have been done but … the time goes by very quickly and it is difficult sometimes to get what you want to be done.”

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  1. hog city says:


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  2. Disinterested says:

    This is why I hate to attend retirements and funerals. At both events, people never keep it real, they keep things positive. Then as soon as the events are over and under the tree, at the bar, at the kitchen table…….etc you are likely to hear that the rascal was miserable, selfish, devilish, mean s..b. Though earlier the same s..b was a saint Hypocrisy!

    Ok. Dr. Smith was good doctor, a decent man/person……etc but a strong leader? Politics didn’t seem to be Doc forte. He was well meaning and give it his best shot but history may not be so kind to him. He made some head sctraching decisions that will linger for a while. His mates got to share some of the blame, for they pandered instead of keeping it real. One memorable quote comes to mind “the Premier got the UK eating out his hand.” No one had the courage until the end to tell the emperor he had no clothes on. We must muster the courage to tell people the truth and stop “mamaguing” them.

    Further, leaders must also be receptive to hearing the truth and not wanting to shoot the messenger. After the first messenger is shot, no one else will tell the truth and leaders end up being ill served. People go along to get along.

    In the end, the UK lost trust and confidence in NDP. Thus, the birth of the RDA; some label the RDA an alternative government. Among former national leaders, ie, HL Stoutt, Williard Wheatley, Ralph O’Neal, Cyril Romney and Orlando Smith, who leads the pack and who is bring up the rear? Readers can do their own ranking; my listing is not a ranking. Nevertheless, wish Doc and family a warm, healthy, peaceful and happy well-deserved retirement from active politics. Bon voyage!

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    • Actually says:

      Actually, the UK lost confidence in the BVI government from the VIP days. Recall the fact that it was as a consequence of the VIP’s financial mismanagement that the BVI had to sign the protocols for effective financial management in early 2012 (recall the NDP had just got into Government in late 2011). VIP’s record on financial mismanagement is clear for all to see:
      $10 – 11 million over run on the bridge;
      $1 million dollar wall in Sea Cows Bay;
      $4 million on traffic lights on the roundabout;
      $100,000 for a 6 page report on drag racing;
      Millions spent useless sewerage projects in East End and Cane Garden Bay
      Thousands of Dollars spent on inserting obstructions in the road outside the airport
      $6 million on covering a small ghut in Johnson’s Ghut
      Millions spend on doing nothing on the Hospital Project;
      Money laundering of millions of dollars
      $571,800 for on the fruitless Neighbourhood Partnership Project where more than half the money was spent on practically nothing.
      The entire fiasco with JW and breaking labour laws.
      There are more things I can mention, but I will stop there for today.

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  3. Respect says:

    I respect him for those words. I heard him on the radio this morning and it sounded very sincere.

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  4. Saddened says:

    If it is one thing I hate is a hypocrite. How can Doc go from wrecking the economy to a very capable leader in the blink of an eye? This is a big hint that Mr. F is just a manipulator of people’s feelings and emotions, and that he is not sincere and can’t be trusted.

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