Inferring how the position of leader to the country should not confer or mimic actions of a dictator, Curtis Dickinson, challenger to the leadership ‘throne’ of the Progressive Labour Party (PLP), made a sharply pointed jab at the authoritative manner of current post holder, Premier David Burt.
In qualifying a well rehearsed quote the former Finance Minister noted the need for honest and real collaboration among varied stakeholders, with a collective execution of solutions wrought.
“I often make the comment, ‘God gave us two ears and one mouth for a reason’,” offered the candidate during the course of a wide ranging interview on this morning’s ‘The Daily Hour’ programme. “And, as a leader, we have to listen more than we talk (because) it’s about inspiring people to do their best.
“If you are in a place where you know all the answers yourself, then you can’t get the best from the persons that are working with you.
“One of he fallacies about what a leader is is that a leader knows all the answers.
Mr Dickinson revealed much of his life and political growth pattern past, present and future intentions from humble beginnings to a world of high finance and deal-making and later an influenced desire to service his country.
Noted by show co-host Sancha Durham to be of great interest and importance was the state of the local economy and she made a point to ask her guest of his plan to enhance Bermuda’s recovery process.
And while Mr Burt has lately had to back-pedal in defence of a fintech experiment that has failed to significantly lift local unemployment, but has brought embarrassment to the Island’s international sector amid questions regarding imposed reporting and compliance standards relative to block chain and cryptocurrency operatives the SEC’s levelling of charges against Bermuda based Arbitrade the latest in a string of accusations of malfeasance by fintech companies with local ties Mr. Dickinson pointed to a foundation of a successful career in the financial services and investment sector, together with a short stay as Finance Minister that imbued confidence in the ability to curtail spending and reduce debt.
“I have three decades of experience leading in the financial services industry,” began the response. “I’ve been an investment banker, which is essentially an expert at solving problems around how to facilitate companies getting capital to pursue their business operations, to pursue business expansion goals, how to run their businesses.
“I’ve led businesses here in Bermuda at the Bank of Butterfield. I’ve led efforts at the investment banks that I’ve worked for.
“I intend to bring my experience to bear. My experience in leading. My experience in finance. My experience in bringing people together to work towards a common goal.
“In fact, an excellent leader is someone who is able to bring people together with various skill-sets to find answers to complex problems.
“What I intend to do is use my experience in finance and problems solving, coupled with assembling a team of people who can help chart a course forward for Bermuda that we can actually all be proud of.”
Mr Dickinson insisted that he held no personal dislike for the Premier despite a decision to resign from Cabinet in February, just prior to the budget being release, over the Government’s awarding of exorbitant tax concessions and funding to investment and development company Gencom, for the refurbishment of the Southampton Princess property.
“I think what’s important is that this contest not be turned into a battle of personalities,” said Mr Dickinson. “It needs to be about the articulation of how to take the country forward.
“The Premier an I have differences of opinion. Those differences of opinion do not need to lead to division and inasmuch as I’m successful and he would like to be part of the work to move Bermuda forward I’m willing to work with him, just as I’m sure he’s willing to work with me.
“What we can’t afford to do is to marginalise people who actually want to help to move our country forward, because we’ve had a difference of opinion.
“The Premier has people who support him. I have people who support me. And my hope is that, when this is all over, we can come together and move forward for the benefit of the country.”
Mr Dickinson expressed a humble satisfaction at being able to meet with the various branches and their delegate, while presenting his leadership platform.
“I can tell you that the public response has been overwhelming and it’s made me feel good about the work that I did as Minister of Finance,” he said. “The process of engaging the delegates is ongoing. I have been out, on the course of the last week and a half meeting with delegates from around the Island.
“The engagements have been very, very good. I feel very good that once people get a chance to sit and talk with me and to hear my story and ideas, they are open to considering me as a viable candidate for leadership.
“So those meetings will continue over the course of the next week, but I’ve been encouraged by what I’ve been seeing and hearing thus far.”
The Delegates are set to vote for the leader and deputy positions on October 20 at St Paul’s AMR Church’s Centennial Hall, with former National Security Minister Renee Ming also vying for position against incumbent Deputy Leader Walter Roban.
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