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OBA unveils Swan for by-election

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Robyn Swan has been announced as the One Bermuda Alliance candidate for the Warwick South Central by-election(Photograph by Akil Simmons)

Robyn Swan has been unveiled as the One Bermuda Alliance’s candidate for the Warwick South Central by-election set for December 20.

At 36, Ms Swan is a fresh candidate to compete for the Constituency 26 seat left vacant by the resignation of former Progressive Labour Party leader Marc Bean.

Prior to that, it was held by Ewart Brown, the former Premier. With grass-roots concerns ranging from racial issues to seniors, Ms Swan told The Royal Gazette she was keen to become more involved in getting the OBA’s message across.

The PLP has yet to reveal its candidate, but is widely expected to retain the seat in one of its traditional stronghold constituencies.

However, Michael Dunkley, the Premier, said the party was determined to make progress in the area, calling it the PLP’s seat to lose.

Regardless of the outcome, Ms Swan said she planned to take part in clinics for “those who might be in debt or looking for jobs, or with general problems like housing and clothing — I would like to become a resource for them”.

Declaring herself “honoured” as she was introduced yesterday, Ms Swan said that despite spending much of her childhood in the United States, she held “fond memories of Ord Road — an area I still consider to be my home”.

“Many of those memories include racing my bike through the Rubber Tree, buying Simmons chocolate pops at Haywards and playing cricket every Good Friday, religiously at the PHC field.

“My connection to the West End runs deep in my veins. I have canvassed the area for the last two weeks and thank you for inviting me into your homes.

“I too have concerns for our area and Bermuda. As a blue-collar worker and mother I too am affected by the decisions that are made on the hill. That is why I have decided to mature from behind the party scenes and graduate into the public arena.”

Ms Swan has political experience in the Cannabis Reform Collective, and has also served in the Department of Corrections. Sir John Swan, the former Premier, is first cousin to her father Edward Swan, and told her that “he just wanted me to do the best that I can”, she said.

Yvette Swan, a former Cabinet Minister, is her aunt, and she called both “heroes”.

Mr Dunkley said of Ms Swan: “To have change, you need a breath of fresh air, and this lady brings that to the table.

“Right now is not the time for an election with all the important stuff we have to do like the casino gaming legislation, St George’s, the airport, the budget next year is very important.

“We are making significant progress and we need to get these things done.

“This election will be a bellwether for the PLP only. This is all upside for us. This is a constituency that the One Bermuda Alliance did not fare well in the last election, in spite of having a very good candidate.

“This is a constituency that has had the former leader of the Opposition and had a Premier of Bermuda in it.

“We know we are going to go out and be very competitive. But it’s theirs to lose. It’s ours to make some progress in.

“We are very confident about our candidate here because Robyn is committed and she has something to offer.”