This has been a rough week for me
Opposition Leader lays down the gauntlet to dissenters
By Ayo Johnson
Progressive Labour Party Leader Marc Bean says the party is getting stronger by the day, but warned supporters that they have to take responsibility for the future.
And he denounced those who insist that there is a generational rift within the party, saying they should leave.
Referring to the One Bermuda Alliance Government as a demonic institution built upon lies and deceit, he predicted a return to government sooner rather than later.
While we have been weakened numerically in the House of Assembly, from what I can see and ascertain by being in parliament, is that from a quality perspective we are far superior to the One Bermuda Alliance, he told an audience of more than 200 party supporters.
Mr Bean urged the party to redouble our efforts to be a government in waiting. Not just a government in waiting but an effective government in waiting which serves the interests of our people.
He said he was willing to take full responsibility for the past but I will ask you to, collectively, take full responsibility for the future.
The governing One Bermuda Alliance is not there to serve our interests, not at all, he said. We represent the best hope of our people.
Mr Bean was speaking at the end of the partys annual Founders Day luncheon yesterday at the Fairmont Hamilton Princess.
Any person who has the audacity to say that I, or my parliamentary colleagues, are anti old people, that person is an instrument of divide and rule, he said.
I dont care if you are a card-carrying member of the One Bermuda Alliance or a card-carrying member of the Progressive Labour Party — if you think theres a generation gap in this party and you speak those words, please remove yourself from our commune.
Nothing is more destructive than being a person who is willing to be used as an instrument by those who want to destroy us. Its not a matter of your age. You could be 18 or 80 that makes no difference at this point.
Mr Bean distinguished between principled thinking and old thinking.
Principled thinking is ancient thinking. Theres nothing new under the sun, he said. Old thinking is all the vices of humanity — the back-stabbing, the envy, the jealousy, the lack of cooperation. Im here to tell you I have very little tolerance for it.
And Im speaking on behalf of the people. The people who will not put up with divide and rule any longer.
He continued: If we are willing, if we are able, if we are desirous to serve not just us but the next generation, then I ask you to turn your swords into ploughshares, put aside the negativity.
But if you are not comfortable with the direction of the Progressive Labour Party — and it is the same direction that our founding fathers set out. If you are not comfortable, then youre free to leave. This has been a rough week for me.
Mr Bean went on to say that the purpose of the PLP had always been for the generations that are not yet born.
Anyone who thinks that you can take something political to the grave, go ahead and try. But everything you try to hold onto will be taken from you.
He called on the party elders to have regard for the young people. And if you are a young person, have regard for your elders.
Mr Bean added: Sooner or later, our backs are going to be up against the wall. So its all hands on deck at this point.
If youre not willing to put your hands in the soil. If youre not willing to be a crew member on the ship thats taking us to our destiny, then get off. But the ship is leaving port, were on our way and nothing, no one will stop us.
We will return to government sooner than you think, because while they think we are at our weak point, the truth of the matter is that the demonic, Harry Potter One Bermuda Alliance will crumble faster than it was built. They will self destruct. Any institution built upon the principles of fraud, of deceit, of lies, will crumble faster than it was built.
We have 50 years under our belt, brothers and sisters, 50 years. We are built on a solid foundation.
So in order to be masters of our destiny, now is the time to mind our business.
The first week of the new parliamentary session has seen two setbacks for the Islands first political party. First Randolph Horton agreed to be the Speaker of the House of Assembly giving a strategic advantage to the OBA. Then, a week later, Terry Lister announced that he was leaving the party and would sit as an independent.
Some observers and insiders have said that some of the older members of the party are unhappy that Mr Bean was chosen as its leader.
The parliamentary group had agreed to support Mr Lister for the position but the delegates overwhelmingly chose Mr Bean who was the only other MP to accept a nomination.