Tourism Minister Jamahl Simmons issued another statement tonight, reiterating that the Progressive Labour Party (PLP) government “has not conceived, considered or given any assurances public or private that either the cashless gaming system or that operator will have a presence in our casino gaming industry”.

In what he termed “a systematic media propaganda campaign”, he also said the new administration “is not considering making cashless gaming on the island mandatory for casino operators” either. Nor are they “considering any proposals related to the gaming industry from MM&I and/or Banyon Gaming”.

He further stated that the PLP government “has not entered into any arrangements with Banyan Gaming or MM&I”. All of which he attributed to the former One Bermuda Alliance (OBA) government.

“It was the OBA government that signed a Memorandum of Understanding with MM&I,” said Minister Simmons. “It was the OBA government that accepted a $30,000 donation from MM&I for a pro gaming campaign.

“While there are those who would engage in mud slinging, innuendo and propaganda, this government is focusing on executing the mandate that Bermudians gave us on July 18th to change the status quo, empower Bermudians and create economic growth for all,” he added.

“We look forward to the debate and passage of the Casino Gaming Amendment Act 2017.”

Earlier today, in a follow up to the tabling of the new Bill, a Tourism Ministry spokesperson told Bermuda Real that the proposed amendment brings Bermuda in line with “Singapore’s legislation governing the ability of the Minister to give legal policy direction in consultation with the Commission and to terminate appointments of Commissioners. Specifically Clause 11 and Schedule 1 of Singapore’s Casino Control Act (Chapter 33A).

“As our legislation mirrors the Sinagapore legislation in many ways, this change brings Bermuda in line with the jurisdiction on which our original legislation was modeled.”