In ten (10) days St. Vincent and the Grenadines will celebrate 38 years of Freedom (in part) from Great Britain. We have come a long way with the exception of going back to 2 obstacles in our sovereignty.
- The Queen still as head of State
- The Privy Council as the final Court of Appeal
It was under the Rt. Hon. Milton Cato that we became Independent and I remember that day like yesterday. 1979 was a great year even though we had the eruption of the volcano in April of that year. Premier Cato had a vision for the country and it was not hard for his transition to be the first Prime Minister. When his Labour Party lost the elections in 1984 he became the Opposition Leader and after serving for a short time he handed in the towel and made way for a replacement.
My question is are we better today than in 1979? I think we have made significant strides, and are now resting looking for a new vision to start moving again. We have lost the grip on crime fighting, and the State appears to have plunged into of “civil disobedience” where civilians are taking matters into their own hands. Our citizens are being held hostage in their homes and like no place is safe again for a “lime”.
The rise in homicides has raised the concern of safety and security in the country for residents and visitors to the chain of Islands for a getaway vacation. Residents and visitors must feel safe in order to have a thriving environment that will generate revenue to push the country forward. The biggest advertisement is the words of the visitors who share their experience while on the Island. Are we paying attention to the statistics and what the magazines are saying?
I love my homeland and soon I will be back to lend a voice in the future development of the country. How is the Government going to handle the infrastructure in the city (Kingstown or Kingstown City)? The shambles of “Little Tokyo and the roads in and around the city. The reinforcement of the waterfront reclamation lands that is a threat to the rise of sea levels. the cleaning of the river and removal of debris to allow free flow of water and reduce the possibility of major flooding. The control of runoff water around the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital and avoid future flooding and the damage or destruction of equipment.
Since we are independent are we taking care of all citizens that were affected by previous hurricanes? How about the people that support political parties other than the ruling party? Are they treated fairly as normal citizens and those affected in other parts of the Caribbean during this current Hurricane season? Remeber that charity begins at home. So while I will not disclose my political persuasion I speak for every citizen and visitor to the country. Will Bequia see the repairs to the main roads as a governmental gesture for the 38th year of Independence? It is a SHAME to see that no repairs have been done on the main roads for some 30 years after it was constructed by the former Prime Minister Sir James Mitchell. Bequia will rise again to the top of the ladder and this is a PROMISE.
Sir Godfrey Gregg