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King: ‘I have listened to experiences of those who live there’

Robert King, the One Bermuda Alliance candidate for the Smith’s North by-election (File photograph)

In preparation for serving the good people in constituency 10, Smith’s North, I have listened to the experiences of those who live there. I have met retired persons, artists, business people, civil servants, churchgoers, community activists and heroes who risked it all to protect young Bermudian men.

This experience has been humbling and deeply rewarding because there is something powerful that happens when you are attentive to people who have shared their problems with you in spite of the broken promises and lack of action by the Government of the day.

I connected immediately with the anger and frustrations expressed regarding the Government informing the residents of Bridle Hill, in August 2023, that the road was unsafe and at risk of collapsing.

As a result, sanitation trucks and emergency vehicles are forbidden to drive on the road. This means that if someone requires emergency medical treatment, anxious family members are also burdened with the logistical nightmare of how will help arrive.

According to residents, they are required to carry their garbage to the roadside for collection, which now poses an environmental risk related to vector control.

Instead of the Government fixing the problem, they are using smaller sanitation trucks – a Band-Aid approach.

I have met families in the Store Hill area and I had expected to hear about the smell of the farm as it has been a common complaint for a while. Despite repeated attempts to resolve the matter with the business owner and government departments, the problem persists.

From Store Hill to Flatts, residents are regularly faced with reckless motorists who speed along North Shore; one constituent shared they were the victim of two accidents when trying to enter the main road from their gate.

This area is known to be a frequent accident spot, where people have lost their lives and have been seriously injured. Despite pleas and complaints to the Government by the neighbourhoods directly impacted, it has done nothing.

Just this past week in FootHills, residents approached me about CCTV cameras that were erected in their neighbourhood, which they believed was done without properly consulting them first.

They were concerned about the possible invasion of privacy and “being spied on”.

They further reported that when they sought answers from the installers and government, they were dismissed.

The constituents of Constituency 10 represent a cross-section of the island. They not only care about each other, but the rest of the island as well. This is why it is disappointing and infuriating to hear that the Government repeatedly ignores their pleas for help to address matters that they cannot legally do without government intervention.

I have pledged my commitment to this incredible community and with their support I will become their representative who will fight for not only them, but our beautiful island home.

• Robert King is the One Bermuda Alliance candidate for the Smith’s North by-election on May 22.

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