BVI News

NDP only interested in a leaders’ debate, party indicates

If political debates should pop up in other electoral districts, National Democratic Party (NDP) candidates might no longer be participating.

In a statement to BVI News on Monday, the NDP Press Office suggested that the party’s position is now that political debates should only be between leaders of the respective parties.

“The entire NDP team is looking forward to such an opportunity as a debate amongst party leaders. We do encourage all candidates, across all parties to utilise the same energy to encourage their leaders to come forward to debate on the future of the territory, planned by a neutral organisation or collection of citizens and residents,” said the NDP while noting that its chairman Myron Walwyn was the first candidate in the 2019 General Elections to call for a ‘leaders debate’.

The NDP gave that indication in response to questions on why one of its candidates, Aaron Parillon, has declined the invitation to participate in the debate for all Third Electoral District candidates.

The party’s seemingly new position on political debates comes weeks after the NDP fielded first-term legislator Dr Hubert O’Neal for the now-concluded Ninth District electoral debates.

Still no answer from Fraser

Meanwhile, leader of Progressives United and Third District candidate Julian Fraser is also yet to confirm whether he will participate in the debate.

His hesitation for not giving any direct confirmation up till this point is not clear. But a social statement from the debate organisers on Monday indicated that at least one candidate, or his supporters, was suggesting that the debate would be impartial. BVI News was unable to get a statement from Fraser up to press time.

Meanwhile, the debate organisers — who are a group only known as ‘The Conversation Committee’ — has denied those claims.

The committee said: “We refute any claims that the committee has been prepping any candidates for the debate. This is an inaccurate statement. The committee members have not engaged in behaviours or conversations that would negate their position to host the debate nor are any members aligned to any particular candidate.”

The group further said Arlene Smith-Thompson of the Virgin Islands Party is the only Third District candidate to confirm her participation in the debate so far.

“The Conversation Committee understands that it is the right of every candidate to choose whether or not they would like to participate in the debate. The intention of the debate is to provide an open platform for all candidates to discuss issues or ideas that affect the community. We respect the positions taken by each candidate and applaud their decision to be a part of change by deciding to contest the elections,” it said.

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  1. Gandalf says:

    Just keep Hubert off that debate stage please. It was like listening to claws on a chalk board!

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  2. How? says:

    The main organizer of the debate is on the campaign committee of one of the candidates and has been calling around persons in the district to support that individual. How then does that person expect to head up a debate amongst the candidates?

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  3. Wowww says:

    We need a debate Fromm everyone atlarge & district representatives.

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    • VI political says:

      there is no time with such a short period and all the district launches and rallies already scheduled. Therefore there needs to be a focus of the leaders and or atlarge.

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    • Casper says:

      What are they afraid of?

      Will the NDP agree to a whistleblower law? Will they agree to stop the payola practice?

      What is their plan besides trying to help themselves to more of our money?

  4. King Kunta says:

    Leaders Only Debate? Not having that.

    If you cannot debate the issues against your opponent to express your plans and dreams for the districts/ territory, why should I feel confident that you can effectively express your positions in the House.

    No Debate…No Vote

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    • @King says:

      We have 3 weeks left, how will we have debates in 8 districts? The question is how can persons think themselves fit to be the Premier of this Territory, to be the ones travelling to London and elsewhere to represent us, and they are afraid of a debate among their counterparts? We all know how the system works, the Premier is the leader and the other persons follow his/her lead. Stop with the foolish excuses and let’s get the leaders out there to put forward their vision for this Territory, this is not a joke, it’s our future at stake here.

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  5. Finally confirmed says:

    So only the leader eligible to represent the people then. Thanks for confirming. The voters should reject the rest of the NDP team.

    With all due respect we need to hear from all in different forums and not only from prepared speeches.

    The NDP finally confirm what we all know. Myrun is the NDP and he choose his puppets who will loyally follow.

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  6. Smhh says:

    Its obvious many of the NDP candidates are just riding on the party’s coat tail.

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  7. Progress says:

    How about having a town hall meeting where the attendees can ask questions from the candidates instead of a debate…at this stage that seems a bit more plausible.

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    • @progress says:

      Good idea but the at large stage would be huge… I do like the idea though

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    • Good idea says:

      I agree with you. I don’t know why this wasn’t the approach from the onset – if not yet done. I dislike forums where you just hear ideas but the public is not able to pose questions to get more substance on the topics. However a debate on specific questions/topics is also excellent. I think if you are running for these positions you should be ready for debates/public speaking etc. and not just reading/memorizing a speech which someone else may have prepared for you. If you are required to go overseas and represent the territory on short notice will you also decline??

  8. Puppets says:

    This just goes to show is only one person really in this party. This is why none of them deserve our votes. The can’t speak up for themselves then they can’t get our votes. Every candidate should debate because we are electing them separately…we need to know what and who we are getting. This is nonsense and the voting populace should BEWARE!

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  9. Nick says:

    It seems to me that the NDP on want ah leaders debate because THE NDP is only one man an that one man going so wa he want so why have ah team of u ain’t ah team player

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  10. Jokes says:

    VIP playing smart but we are not having it. The leader of the party would be the Premier if that party wins. We have 3 weeks left before elections and we want a debate in all of the other 8 districts? Does that make sense? Let the leaders debate and let us know what their plans are for this Territory. Isn’t it ironic that the VIP are only calling for debates in the districts where the other candidates are perceived as weaker when it comes to public speaking? Why aren’t they pushing for debates in the 2nd, 4th and 8th Districts? All of the party leaders seeking the Premier seat need to debate but we all know why they don’t want that.

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  11. Hodge says:

    Angelle is on Sharie de Castro’s committee and some of the others have an agenda. All of the candidates have put out their plans, contact information, they have been campaigning, on radio, on social media etc. This is 2019! If people want to ask the candidates questions, they have multiple means of doing so.

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  12. ndp heckler says:

    All because he has a bunch of incompetents running with him

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  13. time is up says:

    Question: How long?

    Answer: Not long

    No NDP Red and no NDP blue.
    One thing proven is that BVI people will motorcade with you, wear your free t-shirts, eat your food, take your payoff money, take fridge, stove and bed and blow horns at the rallies. But… voting day, they smile pass the candidates at the polling gate, go in the voting booth, do their do (which ain’t what you thought they would do) and walk back out and give you a thumbs up at the gate again. Don’t count the number of likes, don’t count the number of cars, don’t count the number of people, don’t count the number of thumbs up. When the dust settled and all the votes counted, the people will speak loud and clear

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  14. Facts says:

    Why do we need 13 representatives in the HOA if only 1 is willing to have a debate. Myron knows what the BVI knows. His team is not the best for the BVI. He was the same one saying that debates are healthy for a society but as soon as Hubert came out looking like the worst in the VG debate they changed their rules. If the the leader is absent for whatever reason another member of the party will have to take over leadership. It is foolish to put all our eggs in one basket. If Myron has no faith in his team to do well how can he expect us to believe that his team should get our votes. I thought we were better together but now we should make a decision based on one single member of a team? It takes 7 people to form a government. Myron and Alvera are not the same person. Myron and Aaron are not the same person. Myron and Hypolito are not the same person.

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    • @Facts says:

      The real question here is why is everyone bashing NDP/Walwyn and neither Ronnie or Fahie have called for debates? Walwyn is the only one that has called for debates and he is being bashed. It goes to show this is all about playing politics and not about getting information. Walwyn said from day one let the leaders debate and not one has responded.

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      • Facts says:

        We the people are the boss now that the HOA has been dissolved. Government had their way spending recklessly and doing whatever they wanted. The power belongs to the people now. The people are calling for debates. Any party that considers themselves democratic should believe in meaningful debates and town halls. You are advanced enough to create an app but not for a debate between candidate so that I can make a more informed choice on who to represent me and others in the district. We can’t just put our trust in manifestos, rallies or slogans alone. We can’t even trust our friends because some of them are out there working harder to get the candidates elected than the candidates themselves. You don’t need to spend thousands on billboards just walk with your thinking cap and sit next to your opponent and tell us what makes you different and better than the other.

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      • @- @Facts says:

        Paid blogger. You sound like a paid blogger.

  15. Politico says:

    Why is NDP being bashed for this? PVIM isn’t out there seeking debates and VIP are only interested in districts where they think they can win the debate. Why isn’t VIP asking for debates in all districts? Why isn’t PVIM asking for debates? Why all the NDP/Walwyn bashing over this issue when Walwyn was the first one calling for leadership debates? I thought we said leadership matters? If you want to know where the candidate(s) in your district stands on certain issues, contact them on social media, call them, call their committee members. It is easy, let us stop acting as if we really care about information, we just want drama so we can laugh and talk foolishness. This is serious business, all candidates running for elections are contactable with ease so all this hoopla is totally unnecessary. I have been following the campaign and listening to all of the candidates in my district but I believe in voting for a party and I look at the entire team to make my decision, especially the leader.

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    • Blah says:

      How are they “contactable with ease” No committee member will say anything that makes their candidate look bad. You think I can go on Myron page and ask him why we haven’t got the Consumer protection law, landlord/ tenant law that were promised 8 years ago, increase payroll tax exemption and he will answer honestly. How are we gonna call them and get real answers when these man were under oath to provide any request for information in the HOA when asked and still was beating around the bush. You can’t get objectionable information at rallies. It is a fact that the manifestos and campaign promises should not be taken too seriously. Anybody can read or memorize a speech at a rally. You should be ashamed trying to defend these politicians. They all should be held accountable and we should demand that they put up or shut up. In a debate we will be able to ask questions that the candidates will not be prepared for to see what they really capable of making the territory better. NDP have to prove that they are the better team now because the last 8 years they didn’t do anything to show that they were better than the people they replaced.

  16. Quick question says:

    Why do they all look so sheepish.

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  17. Yes says:

    NDP don’t worry the just feel you all is a threat to them, so they trying to bring up all sorts of things and forget about them selves. VIP 1 people so desperate they are the ones here blogging all the time under different names we NDP dont have timne for that we have class the poll will tell.

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    • Now the time says:

      The leaders of the individual parties should engage in a debate . Let the people of the British Virgin Islands know how you all plan on taking this beautiful country forward. Stop the bashing and discuss the serious issues ahead of us.

      • @Now the time says:

        Look…ain’t one man going lead and pass legislation all by he-self…ALL the candidates need to be debate. The House of Assembly is going to be made up of THIRTEEN ELECTED OFFICIALS…NOT ONE…so please stop with your NDP rhetoric…EVERY MAN and WOMAN JACK need to speak up for them own self. If ever we need a march is now…MARCH for the debates

  18. Lion says:

    How do we know the organisers are not one in or of myron choice that the ndp member can say such statement.

  19. Super Bowl says:

    1st District- Fahie
    2nd District-Carnel (NDP forfeit)
    3rd District-Arlene better than Parillon
    4th District- Mark wins by popularity alone
    5th District-Khoy better, Juggie lose twice to NDP
    6th District- Samuel…facts no debating literally
    7th District- Sowande hands down, no contest Diego
    8th District- Tip my hat to Marlon you got this
    9th District- Wheatley, no contest.
    At large: Myron, Carvin, Shereen, Sandy

    Like 1
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  20. Yea whatever! says:

    Myron you are a lame duck, you want that only because you are a strong speaker but guess what you don’t represent all districts and therefore I need my district rep to come and debate her opponents, tell me what her plans are for the 6th district.

    I know so far she ain’t getting my vote. She better step forward.

    Like 2
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  21. WoW says:

    John is so desperate now for votes

  22. NDP Debate says:

    No one should Debate with the NDPs , they should be made to answer questions . Let’s get started!

  23. LMAO says:

    This is the biggest joke ever!


    1st District- Fahie
    2nd District- Mitch (Carnel out of his league)
    3rd District- Fraser or Parillon
    4th District- Mark wins by popularity alone
    5th District-Khoy better, Juggie lose twice to NDP
    6th District- Alvera (with ease)
    7th District- Diego or Pickering (tight race)
    8th District- Tip my hat to Marlon you got this
    9th District- Hubert (biggest election surprise)
    At large: Myron, Sandy, Trefor, Ronnie (NDP sweep possible as well)

  24. Concerned says:

    Thanks for calling for debates.All the sweet talks by politicians don’t translate to action .Both NDP 1AND 2 PVIM are the same and caused all the mess in the country.. PVIM is even worse because of the discrimination .This party doesn’t have anything or plan special for the country. We have seen them in action.Only God will choose the right party of His will.

    Like 2
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