BVI News

No take-backs! Willock calls for by-election, refutes Vanterpool’s ‘return request’

Willock (GIS Photo)

Speaker of the House of Assembly Julian Willock is calling for a by-election, despite Mark Vanterpool’s decision to no longer retire from representational politics.

Vanterpool submitted a resignation letter on March 5; days before Willock was elected as Speaker. But, the flip-flopping politician was informed between March 13 and 14 that his letter must be addressed to the Speaker and NOT the Clerk of the House.

Vanterpool subsequently changed his mind and requested to be sworn in as Fourth District Representative but Speaker Willock said Vanterpool cannot cancel the resignation.

Willock, in a media statement on Thursday afternoon, said: “On 13th March 2019, the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Honourable Julian Willock wrote to Mr Mark H Vanterpool accepting his decision not to be sworn into the Fourth House of Assembly and to resign from representing the Fourth Electoral District.”

“Mr Willock, who was sworn into office as Speaker of the Fourth House of Assembly on 12th March 2019, received a letter from the Clerk of the House of Assembly written by Mr Mark H Vanterpool detailing his decision to resign from the House of Assembly after being re-elected at the February 25, 2019 polls.”

The Speaker then went on to cite Section 67 (3) (a) of the Virgin Islands constitution which states that “an elected member of the House of Assembly shall also vacate his or her seat in the House if he or she resigns it by writing under his or her hand addressed to the Speaker”.

Against that backdrop, Willock then asserted: “Mr Vanterpool’s resignation letter referred to the Speaker was dated 5th March 2019. The acceptance of his resignation by the Speaker now paves the way for a by-election for the Fourth Electoral District of the Virgin Islands”.

Willock is an avid and active member of Virgin Islands Party (the governing party) while Vanterpool is an equally avid member of the opposing National Democratic Party.

Copyright 2019 BVI News, Media Expressions Limited. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or distributed.

108 Comments

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  1. Foolishness says:

    Willock is clearly overstepping his bounds. Marks Position should be honoured. How dare Willock!

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    • 4 district says:

      We ready to march on behalf of Mark VIP already showing them dutty ways!!

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      • Stupid says:

        Ayo is some a*****e yuh hear me

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      • Marching joke says:

        Are you joking? This man was privileged to get re- elected and then quit on you all and now wants to be reinstated. Go sit down ! We aren’t serious, Mark is making an mockery of the BVI that’s not something you march for!

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      • @4 district says:

        You mean Mark shoeing his d***y ways. Living up to the Grasshopper name. Disappointed in him. Actions speak louder than words and his actions show that he is not taking the people seriously.

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      • Hmmm says:

        Does it matter whether you resign to the General Manager or the HR Manager. Point is he submitted a written resignation and made a public announcement. The people’s business has to go on. If speaker is not present, the Governor has overarching responsibility.

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    • Citizen says:

      Willock was appointed and as a citizen bet my bottom dollar his appointment an be revoked after the year end. Please don’t prove to the public your belief of being arrogant. Humbleness is next to Godliness BRO. Be smart and don’t piss the wrong people off.

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    • NDP Supporter says:

      Mr speaker talking outside the people house. Lol 4 years a he. Help us lord send help.

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    • Another fun ny man says:

      Lol that’s who the VIP want. Take out baldhea d and put in another fun ny man LOL

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    • Huh says:

      Didn’t he forfeit his seati by simple not showing up for the swearing in of the ministers? I tthought it was that simple whether or not he wrote to anyone.

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  2. Yup says:

    Correct!!!

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  3. Thank You says:

    He must think that the people of the BV is a bunch of idiots. I am highly disappointed in the former minister. Thank you Mr. Speaker. This position is not a revolving door. Is either you in or you out. Decision made. Go Siddung Now!!!!

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    • @Thank You says:

      Willock needs to go siddung!! Knew he would have the same mentality in the HOA as how he runs V**O!! VIP already pulling those puppet strings!!

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  4. Justice? says:

    And the biasness starts. Willock you are wrong.

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  5. True Colours says:

    Well sa.

    See the true colours coming out. If the resignation was deemed invalid then the resigation can not be accepted.

    Lord Help US.

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  6. Looking On says:

    How does the Law read? Either the resignation was valid or not valid. What makes the resignation invalid or unenforceable?

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    • Constitution Power says:

      Section 67(3) of the Constitution states that the letter must be addressed to the Speaker, very clear. Therefore, Mark’s letter was invalid when he addressed the Clerk.

      Mr. Willock, check yourself. Let the Constitution rule in this instance.

      Swear the man>

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      • The law need updating says:

        If there was no speaker at the time, then who should it be addressed to? The intent of the letter was for the speaker of the house. He resign, he resign. Point blank.

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        • Law says:

          The letter should have still been addressed to the speaker. When the speaker gets in he/she would get it. Constitution is law – can’t go around it. Perhaps it’s time to insert a section with regard to the Deputy Speaker and Clerk accepting on behalf of the speaker. Let’s close those loopholes quick. I am certain that there are many more. Look close and one shall see.

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  7. Not your call says:

    The letter was not addressed to the speaker so he should not have answered in the first place. Additionally, it is the constitution that makes the rule and they are interpreted by the attorney general not the speaker. Mr. Willock in his first week has shown his bias and also his lack of understanding of how the HOA works.

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  8. Fa t says:

    Yea willock but you was not the speaker on March 5, 2019

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  9. Fool is right.. says:

    You cannot legally accept something that didn’t sent to you. Mark is a fool but the speaker is wrong. Mark didn’t wasn’t officially resigned and is entitle to return..

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  10. Oh Wow says:

    Well anyone go ahead and submit a resignation on you job and adress to your direct report instead of the BOSS or HR manager and see if it would not be valid.

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    • However says:

      The speaker was not hired as yet and the Clerk could not legally address it. Maybe the Clerk erred on this one too- addressed to Clerk so maybe Clerk should have responded detailing correct process. IJS

  11. Wow says:

    The Speaker is clearly out of his league and this is not something he would want to start out his stint in this seat.

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  12. Go Siddung says:

    Listen, the Honourable Premier and the entire VIP will see now how much of a terrible mistake they made by appointing this power hungry fired public servant who was locked up IN JAIL and can’t find his way to making amends to the Lord, himself, his family and these beloved Virgin Islands. I for one didn’t agree with the appointment but I said geez man give the boy a chance, but nah man! Since when S—– of the House have this kind of power? Ayo remember he didn’t finish law school eh. W—–k go siddung man! Mark IS the Elected Representative for the 4th. People may not be pleased that he seems to be taking people for a ride, but let’s see how this plays out. He and Fraser might be the right combination to keep Fahie and his team on their toes!!

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    • Repent says:

      @Go Siddung, my Dear you sound so bitter. Are you God? Wouldn’t you love for God to forgive you for all the people you have ‘mowed’ down in your lifetime?
      Leave well enough alone, things will work itself out, you have enough skeletons in your closet. Start your spring cleaning early for once.

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  13. A glad says:

    This technical issue was created by the new Premier, if he had announced the speaker when he was supposed to instead of all this cloak and dagger nonsense, this would be a nonissue.

    A glad!

    This is going to be a just one of many issues to arise out of indecisiveness!

    Watch!

    Further to that, if the constitution which was so joyfully quoted, said the letter was to be addressed to the Speaker and it was not and by virtue of it being address to the wrong persons renders it invalid, how do you assume to accept same?

    It is now a technical issue for the AG and for the Governor and I hope for all you all sakes, that there is still some integrity in that office and they do the right thing, whether it is liked or not, because not doing it sets a very dangerous precedent going forward, as to whether laws will be manipulated to further one’s own agenda.

    Keep playing..

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    • Fool says:

      How would early announcing the name of the speaker help?. In any event there would be no appointed Speaker until the first sitting. Do your research. You are so hasty to blog and talk but yet you talk pure foolishness. You supporters continue to show serious lack of common sense.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Exactly, even the 13 elected representatives dont have any power until they officially take the oath.

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      • duncehead! says:

        so you have proven the point.
        if there was no speaker to accept the resignation before the 12th March.
        how is a letter written the 5th of March, addressed to the wrong party, Valid? and how can it now be accepted?

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  14. 4 voter says:

    Julian wilock you need mind your business we welcome him how dear you say such a thing you need to go sit down you full of troubles only waiting to exlpore

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    • Another 4th voter says:

      I agree, Julian Wilox should really mind his d**m business. Julian, you ain’t S**t.

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    • Schupes! says:

      You are Clearly not from the forth district. We don’t want that clown. And we don’t want any part of his circus. Let him go siddung. Like to take people for granted. Schupes!

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    • Old says:

      Mark is a little boy he need to go sit down he is full of troubles you finish you finish this is no time to play people

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  15. Mr. Hodge says:

    Do we not have an Attorney General on the payroll? Also, shouldn’t the speaker of the house be someone who is impartial? This will get very murky “legally”. On a matter of ethics however, it was Mr. Vanterpool’s itension to resign as stated in writing AND via social media. That fact the he wrote to the clerk instead of the then absent speaker does not nullify his intent to resign.

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    • @Mr. Hodge says:

      Are you a lawyer?

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    • Change of Heart says:

      People submit letters of resignagion in the Private Sector then have a change of heart. If the boss wanted all along to get rid of the person, then they will take advantage of the situation, and refuse to accept the recinding.

      However, an impartial boss would give that employee the opportunity to recind the resignation.

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  16. Facts says:

    What does this tell u people? Cant u read Mr Willock said he was handed a letter by the Clerk Of The House Of Assembly detailing his resignation which we all saw his video he made via WhatsApp 4the whole country know.
    If if someone is a employee at ur business & he handed u a letter say n he wants 2 resign & then handed u another letter say n he dont want2 resign what does it say about him is that someone u want work n 4ur business?

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    • Exactly says:

      The intent to resign was clear He even reinforced it with a video to the public. It is the public, specifically the fourth district that need to decide if they should take him back. An election would give everyone a fair chance to have their say.

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  17. Home Boy says:

    This whole sanerio is becoming very interesting, I don’t know who is Mark adviser but he keeps embarrassing himself. On the other hand this is not the Speaker decision or call to talk about by-Election. Let’s hear what the Governor has to say now since he made a public statement after Mark tendered his resignation to whom ever. Very interesting, Mark either have people for fools or loosing his head.

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  18. Blah says:

    Mark did not seem confused as he made a public video confirming his resignation. He also wrote a letter as well. He deliberately did not get sworn in along with his other colleagues. This should be enough to accept his resignation. You are at the mercy of the proper authority if you decide to change your mind and at no time do they have to honor your request. The only reason I would accept his request is because it will cost time and money to hold another election.

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  19. We have lost our minds says:

    To even have W———- seated as speaker is a disg——. Look at what our institutions are coming to. Willock was fired from the public service. The former governor refused to have him placed on the PSC because he was not deemed as a fit and proper person. He was sent to jail for his lack of res—- for the court system and now he is seated as the speaker of the highest law making body in the country. Look at all the def—– stories that his news site writes almost daily. Nobody see anything wrong here? What kind of institutions are we trying to build in this country?

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    • Hear You says:

      @ We have lost our minds, you are coming off like you so prim and proper, always trying to magnify people’s past failures but the Word says, ” He without sin cast the first stone.” Go figure.

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  20. Lodger says:

    EVEN YOU BLOGGERS COULD NOT HAVE MADE THIS UP!

  21. Comedy central says:

    Mark did something silly we all agree. But this speaker is a real f–l. Did he even read the constitution? Did he call the AG for a legal opinion as the legal advisor to the government? Is the speaker the one who calls for a bi-election constitutionally? Was the speaker the speaker at the time of resignation? Are these matters that a speaker would usually speak publicly on?
    My mother always say “what you buy you wear”. This is the foolishness we voted for. Wait for the news on Claude’s big contract. Then you all pressure will go up. Comedy Central!

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  22. Concerned says:

    Mark seems to b making us look like fools do u people honestly think dat mark doesnt no wat he is doing common people common sense show u as a minister for so many years. U no d legality of everything u trying to tell me dat u made a mistake in d address or better yet u knew damn well dat is d house of speaker u was supose to address to and not d clerk he is running a game to make d new party look stupid u knew exactly wat u supose to do and u did dat for dis exact purpose. Mark go and rest your self u seem to be losing it and to think i voted for u

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    • *Hmm says:

      @ Concerned thats exactly what I been feeling as well. I refuse to believe that Mark or any member of gov dont know the laws. I feel he playing games because you mean to say he in politics how long & dont know is the speaker you need to write to in relation to resignations? Nah I done dont trust none of them & this just a next reason. Writing to the clerk? Come on now he could fool some but I ain in that category atall

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  23. Fool says:

    Silly bull frog! Look at his face. Fool!

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  24. Haha says:

    Mark resigned. Everybody got the video. Mark was not sworn in by his choice. The government was officially formed on Tuesday. He can run again in the BI election if his heart is really in it.

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  25. Bush lawyer says:

    This is just an appeal court case in the making. Both parties have valid points. Mark is wasting the public’s time being a confused child while Willock is being vindictive by not being considerate. Mark wants to be sworn because his letter is deemed invalid as it is incorrectly addressed to the House Clerk rather than the Speaker of the House. Willock is not allowing him to be sworn in because he already accepted his resignation as the Speaker despite the letter being incorrectly addressed to the house clerk.
    Valid points but it is court work as there is nothing in the constitution to direct either party unless an amendment is passed in the HOA ASAP.

  26. Mark says:

    If it was addressed to the wrong person then it can’t be accepted which means Mark is legally still the rep for the 4th. Wilock needs to act right because we all know where he stands.

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  27. Ayo dumb says:

    Ayo people so stupid he resign for what reason and want to come back after he t***f the BVI’s money.Stupid NDP people

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  28. 4 district also says:

    We in the month of march so go march your bomboclat from here wid day fool.

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  29. Hah says:

    “an elected member of the House of Assembly shall ALSO vacate his or her seat in the House if he or she resigns it by writing under his or her hand addressed to the Speaker”. The key word is ALSO meaning that there is more than one way to vacate your seat. If the law doesn’t clearly state what the other ways are it can be considered that a video resignation is sufficient to resign. You cannot force someone to take office against their will even if they did not write to the attention of the speaker the constitution doesn’t hold that kind of power. That’s why he was not obligated to swear in on Tuesday neither did anyone expect to him to as well. Any Court of law will acknowledge that the video will be deemed sufficient to accept his resignation.

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    • @Hah says:

      That “ALSO” can also be referring to other things an elected member can do and not necessarily be pertaining to ways to resign. You need to show the whole clause.

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  30. Confucius says:

    This is the most preposterous situation ever. Utter nonsense! This is the GOVERNMENT of the Virgin Islands, not some Poppy show!

    Mr. Vanterpool needs to give his head a shake and so does Mr. Williock. A bipartisan, *LEGAL* ruling is required.

    Mr. Governor or SOMEBODY with common sense, please step in and put a stop to this. Honestly. What a joke we must be to the outside world!

    The NDP is gone and we are STILL dealing with their mess!

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  31. Jamie says:

    He resigned!….don’t let the door hit you in the rear on the way out!

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  32. The Reaper says:

    Mr W——- VIP fired you back then …Hmmmmmmm Hon Mark Vanterpool Will Represent his people…The Governor have the last Say. Your Faithful The Reaper

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  33. Hmph says:

    Yall clearly didnt see the video Mark made. He re addressed the letter to the speaker of the house on 13 March 2019 and it was accepted by Mr Speaker, so what nonesense yall saying about Julian outta place!!

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    • Fool me says:

      Common people our country is trying to move on wit level headed people a new start we d people are d ones who decided to cut dem out becaz of a lot and now dis so wit a stunt lime dis do we the people accept dis kind of behaviour knowing we are trying. Do we really want mark as a minister after dis he is a man dat clearly dnt no wat he wants and he clearly did not think of d people we dnt want a man who will just switch up on us wenever he feels deem to do so

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    • Concern says:

      The letter stated he wanted to be swear in . The resignation letter was not address to the speaker . Mr Wilock should not accept if the letter was invalid. We all know he is a big one in VIP so he should be careful.

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  34. Weir D. Playne says:

    On Tuesday March 5, 2019 Hon. Mark Vanterpool resigned from office via video sent to the media. Some cheered, some were upset, some didn’t care but we all had to accept his decision. The people deserved better then and they deserve better now. Many have ran for office and I’m sure that all of the losers from this year would have loved to have the opportunity that Mark did not want.If Mark have any doubts about doing his job as the Representative of the 4th District he should continue with his resignation instead of accepting and being just a seat holder for the rest of the term.

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  35. Wow! says:

    The speaker was not elected yet and we all knew that. That is not the point!! He resigned and it is in writing… paper trail. You made your decision now live with it. Willock I am supporting you💥💥💥

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  36. Correct me if in wrong says:

    So since Mr Willock was not appointed as yet who was mark suppose to adddress the letter to? I’m guessing he addressed it to the person who will fall under the speaker since there was not speaker at the moment. I think a by-election is best because since he changed his mind on us we probably changed our minds on him as well, let me speak for my self, since you think we are a jake I think you are too and I’m for a by-election do I can give my vote to some one who’s sure of they want. So Mr Vanterpool all I want to know is what made you resign to begin with and change your mind now? I’m going to try this with my boss when I go into work tomorrow in resigning then I’ll tell that fool a week later that I changed my mind and if don’t accept we going to court! What’s good for the goose is good for the gansa.

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  37. oh dear says:

    I’m just wondering if this constitutional provision is relevant if the representative had not been sworn in. If this is correct (and i really don’t know) Mr Vanterpool was not at the time a member of the house. So this whole thing cannot be about his resignation. The question is whether or not he can change his mind (as an elected representative) to be sworn in as a member of the house, particularly as there is no one yet to replace him and a bi-election has not been called. I dont think there is any legal basis for denying his wish to sworn in if that is the case.

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  38. @ Hmph says:

    Listen to the video and use your intellect.

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    • love says:

      which video the one that was doctored saying that he arrested by the police. you people need to leave well alone.The Governor will handle this matter because he is the highest order of the land.

  39. Bvi lawyer says:

    The constitution provides that the high court will resolve any dispute on this.

  40. #4 Voter says:

    Your Excellancy please intervene and evoke the appointment of this Cockey Upstart Speaker. He has no authority here. If they told Mark his resignation letter is invalid he has a right to remain. Please swear him in on Monday forthwith Sir.

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  41. Concerned says:

    Evoke the Speaker’s position please Governor he will abuse his office and position. We warn you. Please Sir, we thank you in advance.

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  42. Concerned says:

    All of this is nothing, wait until you’ll see the $200,000 per annum Consultant Job. Coming Soon.

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  43. How it is... says:

    1. The Speaker is stretching the interpretation of that provision. Please don’t waste public money…the letter was not addressed to you. Did you take independent legal advice before making your decision? Did you speak with the AG?

    2. MARK do us all a favor and do NOT come back. You had your chance. You obviously don’t want the post. Give somebody else a chance who want it and won’t take it for granted like you. You don’t deserve it anymore with your disregard and disrespect for the electorate especially those who stand up in a line for hours to vote for you.

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  44. Law Abiding Citizen says:

    Boy W——. You move your dumb dishonorable ass.

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  45. Exactly says:

    The intent to resign was clear He even reinforced it with a video to the public. It is the public, specifically the fourth district that need to decide if they should take him back. An election would give everyone a fair chance to have their say.

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  46. Bragged says:

    Got spunky and even mentioned his homeland as to imply that he done with tola. Now saying he wants to return .

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  47. good one says:

    the ndp put mark up to this s-**t to stir up trouble in the house and its working. look at mark face in the video on completion of his speech. he could hardly contain the evil and malicious smile. mark know his team was in trouble for the election and the word was out saying he wasnt running again. he still pop up and got elected. the plan was to prove that he will still win. he resign because he dont have any of the bullfrogs from the ndp to help he dig we eye out further. now he decide to resign and cause conflict. i could see them all smiling especially hmmm. mark is being encouraged by his fellow fart boxes and for now it seems as though it has worked. at the same time i hope he pays for his arrogance and blatant stupidity.how the people in the 4th suppose to trust this man. HOW. this is the perfect opppportunity to ammend section 67 (3) and show mark the people both of this land and his constituent ought not to be made a mockery. MOOMOO

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  48. BVI says:

    Willock need to know when to speak.
    Also the clerk needs to be a lawyer.
    A resignation does not need to be accepted by anyone. This issue traverses contract and constitutional law. The speaker is not a person it is a post. The clerk had no authority to reject. The letter reached the officer at the speaker’s office and that was sufficient. To lock the door, by the action of the governor putting in effect the notice of an impending bi election as the head of government signifies the action of agreement.

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  49. Help Us Lord says:

    I am so ashame to some of you people..are you so blind. You elected him it wasn’t even two weeks the man turn his back on you by resigning for PERSONAL REASONS now he wants to come back???? How can you put your trust in someone like that! Now is the VIP showing their duty wsys? People stop being like Sheep in a pasture. Some of you down on Willock because he’s the speaker. Let him do his job then you can judge him. This what Mark has done is a clear show of someone who doesn’t care. If you so love your people as you claim you stick with them through thick and thin, not turn your back on then and when things look GREEN you want to come back? BOY FOR GOD SAKE, GO SIT DOWN.
    YOU PEOPLE TALKING ABOUT MARCHING, YOU MARCH FOR SOMEONE WHO STICKS WITH YOU THROUGH THICK AND THIN, GOOD AND BAD, NOT A GRASSHOPPER…..YOU NEED TO MARCH YA BACKSIDE TO SIT DOWN. MY PEOPLE AND THIS COUNTRY CANT AFFORD THE FOOLING AROUND. THESE ARE SERIOUS TIMES!

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  50. Mark must go says:

    MARK VANTERPOOL SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN RE-ELECTED. OUR PEOPLE NEED TO STOP BEING NAIVE HE RESIGNED HE GOT TO GO. HE CANT JUST DO WHAT HE WANTS BUT THEN HE DID THAT UBDER NDP BUT THIS IS NOT HAPPENNING UNDER VIP. END OF STORY.

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    • @Mark must go says:

      There is something call the Constitution and it had more overarching powers that our emotions, and the Speaker. This will eventually become a legal battle, that appears to be in Mark’s favour. Like it or hate it.

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  51. Good says:

    Good for you Tortola idiots. Pay back is a B.

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  52. Wondering says:

    Waiting to hear from the Governor. What a messy situation and terrible start to a new administration. Please Mr. Jaspert get on the record with your take on this. Way too much airing of BVI’s dirty laundry on public media.

  53. #@@ says:

    Only in the BVI thrse thing can happen. If one of these persons should know how the system should work, it is Mark. He have been in the HOA of so much years. His intent eas very clear. He quit and resigned. The letter could not be addressed to the speaker because we had to wait until the first setting of the house to know who that would be. However, Mark didn’t wait for it. If Mark didn’t know the rules after all these years u still want to forgive him and give him pass. But u all cannot forgive Willock for his pass years ago.

    We are not running a play house. The governor already said we will have a bi election. The governor said it first. Willock is only repeating what the governor said.

    Mark have already made his resignation public. It is out there for the whole world to see. If he want, he can run in the bi election.

    If Willock made a mistake with how the letter should have been handled, he would learn from it . Remember, some lawyers do make mistakes and lost a case.

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    • @#@@ says:

      Willock 2 day in as Speaker and he done gone bias. What a muck.. He need shut up. Mark I tell you this Speaker will be a whirlwind. The ship go rough water.

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      • #@@ says:

        I am from BVI. And I can say that sometimes we cannot forgive some people and look pass their mistakes. Mark was in the Government HOA for years and still don’t know how it works. Willock is new , he is the one who should get a pass on this one. That is the same reason why, NDP find it was always okay for them to take our tax money for themselves and to this day we cannot lock not one of their ass up.

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  54. :) says:

    If Mark showed up on the day when he had to swear in and took the oath the resignation would have been null and void but he resigned publically and did not show up on the day of work or the following day and never swear in. The choice to retain the seat is no longer up to him as he forfeited all rights to it. A black cloud will be over the district whether he get the seat or not due to all the confusion that he has caused.

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  55. Where is the Governor? says:

    BVI politics is getting way to out of hand. Mark public stated he was stepping down for health reasons now somehow a miracle has happened making him healthy again and he wants his seat.

    The voters should vote on this because he let his supporters down and just playing with the people. What are the motives behind all this.

    First he was not going to run. Then at the last mintue he decide to run. He won and in no time he step down and now after the first HOA he have a change of heart. Was it something someone said? Perhaps they just don’t want another VIP seat .. so its a power struggle?

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    • Accra says:

      He never said health reasons stop talking things he didn’t say… He said PERSONAL REASONS… Get the facts before your blog

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  56. Insider says:

    The only place you will march to is THE COURT on this one.

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  57. A Reader says:

    Vanterpool appears not to be of sound mind.
    Here is how I understand the facts…
    Vanterpool was successful in the just concluded elections at the end of February.
    Prior to being sworn in, Vanterpool wrote a letter of resignation stating that with regret, he had chosen not to accept a seat in the Assembly due to ‘personal reasons’.
    At the time of writing and submitting that letter to the Clerk of the House, there was no Speaker in office, because the Assembly had not yet met.
    In addition to the letter, Mr Vanterpool made a videotaped statement confirming his resignation and thanked the constituents for voting for him over the years. He did not appear to be coerced or under any duress, and has not claimed such since.
    Mr Vanterpool did not attend the assmbly sitting where the other members of the Assembly were duly sworn in. Thus is any reasonable person’s mind further confirming his resignation.
    The Governor of the BVI was of the understaniding that Vanterpool had resigned and steps were being taken and statements made about a By Election.

    Now along comes Mr Vanterpool purporting that his resignation was not valid, simply by virtue of him not knowing at the time that he was supposed to address the letter to the Speaker of the House.
    While the position of Speaker of the House was vacant and the instant; the office of the Speaker was at all times a valid one, and the Clerk whom the letter was sent to works in the said office. Therefore the intent of Mr Vanterpool was clear, and as mentioned before backed by an internationally published video, starring Vanterpool himself.

    Citizen Vanterpool is therefore free to contest the upcoming By Election.

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  58. BVI says:

    The Attorney General is Government’s Chief Law Officer. Hence, it’s the AG who will decide whether Mr. Vanterpool’s letter was valid or not.Clearly Mark was ill advised. He ought to have waited until after the swearing in ceremony and tender his resignation thereafter.

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  59. Go sit down!! says:

    Go sit down cause you didn’t want to come!😄😄😄😱

  60. Sage says:

    On March 5 Mark Vanterpool sent a letter to the Clerk of the HOA requesting to be relieved of membership of the HOA. At that time there were no members and no Speaker. Mark Vanterpool was a ‘Member Elect’.
    Mark Vanterpool would have become a member on March 12 if he had presented himself, but was absent. The reason for his absence was stated in his letter to the Clerk on March 5.
    The Speaker is not required to respond to a person who is not a member. And he can deal with the absence either by notifying the Governor of the vacancy or by acceding to Mark Vanterpool’s request. It seems that the Speaker has chosen the first option.
    Either way, it is the Speaker’s call, not Mr. Vanterpool’s, although he is entitled to go to the court.

  61. Fair Minded Bystander says:

    I have been watching this matter unfold and I have had a discussion with a few people and made a few notes.

    Now I am no lawyer but one seems to be addressing the real problem and I hope the Judge is given the proper assistance by lawyers of both side. This is the way I see it:

    1. There was no House and no Speaker when Vanterpool claimed to have resigned. The House of Assembly Office was open and headed by the Clerk.

    2. Since there was no Speaker and no House because it was dissolved, Vanterpool was not a Member of any House of Assembly and therefore could not resign from it.

    3.Vanterpool can call his letter anything he likes but it was not a resignation. It was no more than a notification of his intentions. If that is understood, then the letter, being a notification was not invalid.

    4.A person becomes a member of the House AFTER he takes the Oath of Allegeance and is invited by the Speaker to take his seat.

    5. A person who refuses to take the Oath cannot be invited to take his seat and cannot be a member.

    6. Vanterpool had two options when he was elected:

    (a) he could accept the will of the
    electorate and present himself to be sworn
    in as a menber, or
    (b) he could decline to appear and accept the
    the consequences.

    7. Those two options were his and his alone. No one could make the choice for him.

    8. Vanterpool chose to decline. His letter was therefore an exercise of his freedom of choice. It could not have ben a resignation as he had not taken the Oath of Allegeance or his seat.

    9. At the inauguration of the House, Vanterpool was not among those who appeared to take the Oath and their seats.

    10.The Speaker could not drag him kicking and screaming and compel him to take the Oath. Vanterpool had a God-given freedom of choice which no man could take away from him.

    11. This is the rub here which only a few people seem to realize. There is a law called the Legislative Council (Immunities and Privileges) Ordinance which everyone should know because even I know it.

    12. Section 19 of that law along with the Standing Orders of the House give the Speaker absolute control of the House. His rulings are not subject to the jurisdiction of any court. In other words the House and the Court are co-equal branches of Government neither has jurisdiction over the other.

    13. Where,then do the Court, the Governor, the Speaker, the Premier, the Leader of the Opposition and Mr. Vanterpool go from here?

    14. Sorry folk, but it seems that a Judicial Review is not the way to go. Either,

    (a) the Speaker shoud accept the view of some
    and allow Mr.Vanterpool to be sworn in
    whenever Mr. Vanterpool chooses, or
    (b) insist on order and respect and deorum for
    the House and refuse to set a bad precedent.

    If the Speaker chooses (a), it will save the cost of a by-election. If he chooses (b), a by-election will be necessary and everyone will have to accept the outcome of it.

    A by-election will come at a financial cost but at least every person will know that highest institution in Territory believes in order and enforces it, and that unless an elected person is ill or offers a decent excuse for not attending the inaugural session of the House, he cannot take his seat whenever he chooses to do so.

    He cannot simply stay away and then ask to be seated when he, personally, considers the opportunity right or convenient to do so.

    There are two institutions in the Territory that do not operate at whims, fancies or convenience of anyone. They are the Cour and the House House of Assembly. They carry out the people’s business and do not tolerate any semblance of disrespect. They do not allow a man who creates chaos to benefit from it.

    People must act responsibly. This is a matter for the and the Speaker alone.

    sorry if my reasoning is a bit muddled.

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