Former Premier and leader of the One Bermuda Alliance, Michael Dunkley confirmed that he did not vie for leadership of the party, just before the party confirmed that Craig Cannonier is the new leader by acclamation.

In a statement released yesterday, Mr Dunkley said while “many” of his colleagues were ineffective during the past year, moving forward, he said it was time for them to unite.

His statement came on the deadline day for nominations to fill the positions of OBA leader and chairman.

The party’s leader, Craig Cannonier was officially named shortly after Mr Dunkley’s statement was issued. Mr Cannonier was sworn in as Opposition Leader last Monday at Government House, following a vote of no confidence in Jeanne Atherden.

Mr Dunkley, who was Premier for three years said: “There has been a great deal of speculation on whether I would put my name forward during the nomination period to be the leader of the One Bermuda Alliance.

“After a great deal of pressure, support and consideration I have decided not to submit a nomination.

“The OBA has gone through a difficult period since the last election — many Opposition members have not been effective to this point and there has been a leadership change.

“Now is the time to bring the party together, to build the party and to bring renewed energy and enthusiasm to the important work that must be done,” he said.

Now’s also “the time to demonstrate to the people of Bermuda that no matter how difficult the challenge, the OBA will stand together for the betterment of our people”, he added.

“I have served in many leadership positions and with my experience and at this point in life it is not always necessary to be the focal leader.

“I can use my experience, ability and enthusiasm in other ways and I am willing to work with my colleagues to do what is required for the OBA and Bermuda.”

Mr Dunkley concluded: “We can and must hold all our leaders to account in their service with transparency, responsibility, accountability and integrity.

“These values must transcend words and promises.

“For the many who have expressed concerns about leadership past and present I encourage you to be an active part of ensuring that the leadership consistently actions these values.”