Rankin to present Cup Match trophy
The Governor will present the trophy at Cup Match this year — despite a controversial call for him not to by a government minister.
John Rankin confirmed last night after he had received an invitation from the Somerset Cricket Club to hand over the cup to the winner of the annual East versus West clash.
A spokeswoman said: “Government House is pleased to confirm that the Governor has kindly been invited to attend and present the Cup. He will be pleased and honoured to do so.”
The move came after Lieutenant-Colonel David Burch, the public works minister, told the House of Assembly that he had refused to repair a wall at the Somerset ground unless they agreed to not invite Mr Rankin to present the trophy.
He also linked the repair work, needed because of hurricane damage two years ago, to the introduction of proper recycling at the club.
Colonel Burch told MPs last month: “I think if people look at it historically, this is a celebration of emancipation of slaves.
“So why would we still accept, in 2018, inviting he who enslaved us to come and not only celebrate with us but also be the person who presents the cup.
“I would really like to help our club, but they have to work with me.”
He added: “They have been unable to find the fortitude to tell the man on the Langton Hill ‘thank you very much, but watch the cricket on television’.”
Michael Dunkley, a former One Bermuda Alliance premier, said last month the head of government should present the trophy.
He added at that time: “This is an important Bermudian holiday, a community holiday. We should never forget our past, our history. It’s appropriate that the Premier present that cup at the end of the day.”
Slavery in the British Empire was abolished by a UK Act of Parliament which came into force in 1834. Mr Rankin said after Colonel Burch’s speech in the House that he would abide by the decision of the club.
The damaged wall was repaired by members of the public and members of the One Bermuda Alliance, who helped to purchase supplies, after Colonel Burch delivered his ultimatum.
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