BVI News

VIP gov’t firing statutory board members based on ‘new policy’

The central administration complex in Road Town that houses several government offices. (GIS photo)

Persons sitting on any of government’s statutory boards or commissions are now in danger of being sacked by the new VIP administration that was elected into government back in February.

Minister of Transportation, Works, & Utilities Kye Rymer gave that indication in the House of Assembly on Friday, May 17.

“It is the position of this new administration that the tenure of any board member should not go beyond the term of any sitting government. This is a new policy being implemented by this government.” Rymer said.

Rymer also confirmed that since April 22, at least one board under his portfolio has been affected by the new policy.

“As it relates to the board members of the BVI Electricity Corporation, the Cabinet of the Virgin Islands approved the revocation of the appointments of most of the members, which is in the process of being rectified to include all members,” the govenrment minister said.

He added: “The Board of the BVI Electricity Corporation was revoked in accordance with Section 5 of the BVI Electricity Corporation Ordinance, Chapter 277 of the Laws of the Virgin Islands.”

Minister Rymer was responding to a series of questions being asked by Opposition Leader Marlon Penn.

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32 Comments

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  1. Consumer Protection? says:

    It was thought that consumers would have realized a relief, if even slightly, in those costly monthly bill fees with a new Electricity Board of Directors in place.

    That did not occur, however, and probably is wishful thinking.

    Further, it will be a test of moral, political and economic principles to witness how government will enact, legislate and enforce consumer protection policies within the private sector, when its own agencies are equally involved in price gouging of the public/people.

    Like 12
    Dislike 1
    • Hmmm says:

      I am surprised this is just making news. I heard National Bank, Electricity, Sea Port, Airport, Hospital, most of the members were sacked.

      Like 13
  2. Just my 2 cents says:

    Policy should not be overiding law. However, people must be mindful that when your position is the result of political alingment or affiliation, then changes are imminent once a new government exist.

    Let these changes emerge as a nucleus for overall development and not as a tool for victimization or political vendetta.

    Like 27
  3. Hmmmm! says:

    These guys showing their true colors now. So even if the member is on the board for their expertise and is bipartisan, they still must go. Things that make you say Hmmmmm!

    Like 33
    Dislike 20
    • To Hmmmmm says:

      So only who the ndp put on those boards have expertise? They have the same set of people on all the boards. The VIP is doing the right thing. It should have been done long ago.

      Like 21
      Dislike 7
    • BOARDER says:

      This happens in every country that I know of. May be new to the BVI, but in other countries the board members usually resign. Some may also be brought back.

      Like 18
      Dislike 1
    • Guest says:

      What d83$3$ expertise some of them it is not even their field of study and some are sitting on 3 to 4 boards you mean to tell me there are no other qualified bvislanders that you looking expertise by people who studied something different altogether???

      • @Guest says:

        You so right. People would hit the roof if they saw some of the persons who were appointed on the previous boards and on more than 1 board at a time with not a drop of education or expertise but merely for backing that party.

        VIP and any other sitting government better stop this trend

  4. Well Sah says:

    I heard that members of the entity mentioned were dismissed on the spot, in a curt and callous manner, as requested by the Head Honcho. Cabinet approved the revocation exactly one week after the dismissal.
    It is not what you do, but how you do it.
    Guess next we will see party supporters, family members, cronies and best friends of the ruling government loading up the boards of statutory bodies. But wait – it has already started! Is this democracy? Is this fairness and transparency?
    To our elected officials – have respect for the people who sacrificed their time for the good of the territory.
    People of the BVI, four years of inclement weather lie ahead. Prepare for a rough ride.

    Like 19
    Dislike 8
  5. Shorty says:

    I thought VIP was preaching inclusion so it shouldn’t matter who sits on the board of a STATUTORY body which by the way suppose to be self sufficient. This is now showing that these boards will be strictly political. On another note if a board member was appointed to serve for say 3 years prior to this new government and the contracted has not been fulfilled isn’t that a breach?

    Like 17
    Dislike 4
    • @Shortly says:

      Only the ndp people who were taken off are crying unjust when they full well know what evil they were up to and nothing for the people ans sitting government would get done.

      Like 8
      Dislike 14
      • Not so says:

        Untruth. Check your facts.

      • Shorty says:

        I don’t know persons on any board much less their political affliation. However,based on your analysis the sitting government is likely to appoint their supporters who based on your analysis will do nothing for people but only for their party in power. When will we move away from the political nature in everything in this country down to what we eat turns into politics.

        Like 9
        Dislike 1
  6. Albion says:

    I am all for increasing accountability in relation to the members of statutory boards. Too many areas in BVI we have had poor delivery for years and no changes at the top. Same poor service just carries on like it is normal.

    However, what I would be solidly *against* would be a system where all the boards get purged every time we get a new Government, and the new Government gets to appoint a bunch of cronies to senior positions on generous salaries. Nothing good could possibly come of that.

    Like 23
    Dislike 2
    • Good governance says:

      simply could not agree with you more!

      Accountability = good.
      Relevant expertise = good.
      No lifetime members (replacement) = good
      Disconnect from politics = good

      Connecting board membership / tenure to government cycle = terrible
      Changing all boards at the same time = terrible
      Divorcing board process and accountability from the organisation’s needs and the requirements of good governance = just simply wrong

  7. Albion (2) says:

    Is there a budget for all the severance payments that Government will need to make in relation to these terminations?

    If so, will that budget be published?

    Like 20
    Dislike 2
    • Dianna says:

      @Albion 2:

      Government owes no one any severance pay for being on boards, it is not a permanent job. They are paid a per diem for being on these boards. So they can ask anyone to leave as they see fit. In case of some boards members time were up and some chose not to extend it.(This was the case with Health Services) Not all cases were done out of malice.

  8. My take says:

    I agree with any government that does what is being done now. You cannot serve two masters.

    Like 10
    Dislike 3
    • Who's the master? says:

      Board members are serving the people of the BVI and the organisation or body on whose board they sit. They are not actually serving the government.

      Like 11
      Dislike 1
  9. Say what y’all want says:

    The Boards all need a good shaking up. I support the move.

    Like 20
  10. Julia Donavan says:

    test

  11. The Hooded Claw says:

    Are these terminations part of the 1000 jobs in a 1000 days initiative?

    Like 12
    Dislike 4
  12. I say says:

    Shake it up. You have to do a little shaking up every now and again in business.

  13. Good show says:

    It got some living of the Board stipend and doing more harm than good on those boards. Go find a job now.

  14. The Reaper says:

    This is not new. Your Party Win U In. I out. My party win I in. U. Out. And That’s how the cookies crumbles

  15. No Words says:

    They have fired the boards but kept all Senior Civil Servants including the PSs and Accounting Officers. If what Kye is saying supposed to make sense, then it should be the entire administration being changed like is done in USVI, the USA and other countries. Why dismantle boards without deciphering whether they’re performing adequately or not?

    Like 12
    Dislike 1
  16. vip heckler says:

    So instead of giving jobs he’s taking?

    Like 4
    Dislike 1
  17. Those boards! says:

    Yes. Hope they have disbanded that hlscc board. They behave as if the college belongs to them personally. Get rid of the president while you are at it too.

    Like 3
    Dislike 2
  18. Quiet Warrior says:

    This is pure nonsense. I’m not naive enough to not believe that some appointments to statutory boards will be political, rewarding support for the party in power. Now though the membership of statutory bodies will comprise strictly of political supporters; some may call them political hacks. Membership on boards is a reward for support of party. This approach is not the most effective means of getting the best service from the body. What is the purpose of statutory bodies? IMO, one purpose of statutory bodies is to set operational policies and to provide effective oversight of the execution of those policies.

    However, a complete revamping of the bodies membership every 4 four years is not in the best interest of the bodies and will diminish the outcome. Doing so will kill continuity and result in lost of corporate history. Some government positions are inherently political but membership on statutory bodies should not be inherently political jobs.

    Further, there are too many statutory bodies in the BVI. Most of them should be reverted to departments. Some of these statutory bodies are departments in much larger locales. Moreover, why in the BVI boards and commissions members are paid? If members were not paid, would there be the same level of interest to serve on these boards and commissions? Probably not. Nevertheless, in much larger locales, membership on boards are on a volunteer basis with no pay.

  19. BuzzBvi says:

    This is political BS that promotes the crony landscape and corruption in the VI.

    Better change the law so that any Government that appoints people has to have those same people serve under an opposing Government. Then when that Government sacks and reappoints they must also know that whoever they appoint must also serve under the next Government.

    We have to stop this political ping pong.

    Like 5
    Dislike 1
  20. Test Their knowkedge. says:

    The people they putting on these boards needs to know the constitution of these boards are. Put them to the test and if they can’t answer the questions don’t appoint them especially these chairpersons. Hon. Premier test these board members.

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