*iStock photo
*iStock photo

A chronology of the casino saga context for the allegations that were hurled around in the House of Assembly on Friday.

June 2012

House of Assembly passes a bill establishing procedures for ballot referendums, including one for casino gambling.


• 
December 2012

In the general election, the OBA’s Nandi Outerbridge (then Nandi Davis), won her seat by just four votes over PLP candidate Renee Anderson-Ming

In the run-up to the election, the OBA had said it supported holding a referendum on casinos 


• April 11, 2013

An internal brief offering political advice to Tourism Minister Shawn Crockwell is finished. 

The document lays out a strategy for foregoing a referendum several months before the OBA-led government would abandon its campaign pledge to put the issue before voters. The document presciently addresses the ramifications of such an about-face, acknowledging the government “will have to endure several attacks during its term”, specifically attacks “concerning its adherence to platform promises”.


• July 2013

OBA MP Nandi Outerbridge is at the centre of a controversy involving Facebook threats and a vandalized car.

A woman whose car was vandalized — the words ‘whore’ and ‘bitch’ were scratched into it — was also targeted with a series of offensive Facebook messages that appeared to come from Ms Outerbridge’s account. Ms Outerbridge says her account was hacked.

Ms Outerbridge meets with Opposition, Marc Bean and records their conversation using her iPhone. Mr Bean says the meeting was to assure Ms Outerbridge his party would not resort to personal attacks against Ms Outerbridge in the House of Assembly.


• August 2013

Ms Outerbridge is interviewed by police at Hamilton station in connection with a domestic matter. Police would ultimately drop the matter without bringing charges.


• September 2013

Mr Bean says during a meeting to discuss the gambling referendum, the Premier tells him:

• His businesses are in financial difficulty:

• A developer offered to pay a trio of OBA MPs in exchange for a casino licence

• He distrusts his some of his Cabinet colleagues.

The Premier has rejected Mr Bean’s assertions, saying it would be nonsensical for him to divulge such information.


• 
December 10, 2013

Shadow Finance Minister David Burt alleges Premier Craig Cannonier called him to his office on this date and offered him a bribe for political support. 

Specifically, Mr Burt says the premier suggested Burt’s IT company could land a government contract if he supported scrapping a referendum.


• December 13, 2013 

The OBA officially scraps the plan to have a referendum on casino gambling

Premier Craig Cannonier said instead of opting for a referendum, which he suspected would be undermined by the PLP, he would rather bring casino legislation straight to the House.

The PLP criticized the move, saying it “weakened trust in our political process”.


• Jan 2014

A group of activists launches a petition drive calling for a referendum on casino
gambling.

One of the activists behind the petition push said he has collected at least 2,000 signatures.


• Feb 14, 2014

Shadow Finance Minister David Burt goes public with his allegations that the Premier tried to bribe him back in September. 

It is also revealed on the floor of the House of Assembly that a meeting last July between Mr Bean and Ms Outerbridge was recorded by the latter. Premier Craig Cannonier calls the recording “atrocious” and suggested the contents were damaging to Mr Bean’s reputation. 

He also suggested Mr Bean tried to persuade Ms Outerbridge to switch parties or resign.

In their explanation for their refusal to release the recording, OBA officials have said the contents of the recording would be harmful to the country if released, but have not detailed how Bermuda would be damaged by any such release. 

Research: Danny McDonald