Bermudans elect new leader
HAMILTON — The One Bermuda Aliance swept into power amid scenes of hysteria outside their headquarters on Reid Street.
Celebrations spilled out onto the street once the OBA’s majority of 19-17 had been officially declared.
The victory ends 14 years of Progressive Labour Party government in Bermuda and prompted cheers of “OBA” to ring around the Vasco Da Gama Club where the candidates gathered.
Craig Cannonier was cheered all the way to the stage by hundreds of supporters before he addressed the crowd.
He said: “Bermuda has seen a new day.
“I want to thank everyone in Bermuda for bringing in a new way of politics not based on race or colour.
“A politics not dictated by where you come from whether it is St. David’s or Dockyard.
“But a politics truly merited on whether you are willing to work hard to achieve something.
“Bermuda stands in a new place.
“We always said from the beginning that this is about the people of Bermuda and not race.
“We have set a new standard in politics.”
After a night of high tension that saw sitting Premier Paula Cox ousted by Glen Smith, Cannonier said the party would celebrate until morning.
Smith told the Sun: “The OBA claimed a series of high profile scalps on their way to the 19 seats they won.”
Shawn Crockwell won by a landslide in the crucial Southampton West Central seat, while Mark Pettingill ousted Dale Butler in Warwick North East.
Michael Dunkley stormed to victory against Patrice Minors while Leah Scott brought home the Southampton East Central seat for the OBA.
Kenneth Bascome overcame his long time foe Dame Jennifer Smith to seize the St. George’s North seat.
The night of high drama was competed when Nandi Davis upset the odds an won the St. George’s West.
The victory sent OBA supporters into delirium and many began dancing in the streets and hugging each other.
Crockwell told the Sun: “This is indescribable.
“For Glen to do what he did was just incredible.
“This journey began two years ago and it took a few brave men to leave the United Bermuda Party and forge a new way.
“This day is monumental and it is historic for Bermuda.
“Now we have to deliver for the people of Bermuda and that is what we will do.”
Reid Street was alive with the sound of music and people cheering. (Bermuda Sun)