“Anyone can give up; it is the easiest thing in the world to do. But to hold it together when everyone would expect you to fall apart, now that is true strength.” Chris Bradford
I begin my column on a positive note this week, and as a result, I will leave behind those things which have caused us to be fearful and retarded our progress up to this point.
Congratulations are in order for the citizens of Barbados for taking the bold step of becoming a Republic on the 55th anniversary of their independence. Barbados has come of age and will assume the responsibility for managing their own affairs without any outside interference, which is what I consider to be true independence.
Saint Lucia was represented by Prime Minister, Honourable Philip J. Pierre at the inauguration. The question is – which country will be next? If former Prime Minister, Dr. The Honourable Kenny D. Anthony, currently Member of Parliament for Vieux Fort – South has his way, Saint Lucia will be next. The initial work has already been done in preparing a draft constitution; all that is needed is the political will to execute the plan to establish Saint Lucia as a Republic. This is the decade for action; many decisions that were put on the back burner will be executed in this decade. Many things that have not been spoken of but have been a long time coming – the moment is here. Some may even be unpleasant but the time has come for them to be brought to the fore.
As I indicated, I want to stay on a positive course this week, even though it is difficult due to the fact that nothing is constant but I will do my best. Change is really the only constant.
The Saint Lucia Chamber of Commerce, Industry & Agriculture hosted its 137th Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, 30th November, 2021. In keeping with COVID 19 protocols, it was held virtually. I was very pleased to be a part of the audience and spent time listening to the main speakers whose presentations had all the ingredients that would trigger the enthusiasm of all present, and those who will listen to or read the presentations subsequently, which I hope will be widely circulated in the media and by all other means that will place the presentations in the hands of those who need guidance to meet the demands of these challenging times.
Mr. Francis Lewis of ResConsulting spoke on the topic – Reset, Rethink, Reboot which was well presented and he used visuals effectively. Our Prime Minister, Honourable Philip J. Pierre presented the featured address and stressed the need for the Government and the Private Sector to work together in creating a better Saint Lucia.
He gave an overview of matters relating to the economy and the health sector, and what the Government plans to do to bring about the necessary changes. He lamented the state of the youth and cited the unemployment situation which is receiving urgent attention. I suggest that the two presentations be read in Cabinet to get all members on the same page in recognising that the Government, and Private Sector which is the engine of growth must work together.
Last week when I sat down to write this column, I was seeing all the signs that the pandemic was receding. However, by the time the weekend newspaper got to the stands, it was a different tune as the OMICRON variant introduced itself to the world from its source country South Africa. The reaction was swift as countries began to place travel bans on travellers from a few African countries. It is evident that COVID 19 will be with us for some time in the future, and as a result, we must have a plan to move on with our lives in a state of consciousness that we can coexist with COVID 19 if we heed the advice of the medical professionals, get vaccinated and adhere to the protocols. We have come thus far and there is a road ahead for all who will be guided by science and obey the health laws of their country.
Finally, the month of December is here and for those of us who are fortunate to be alive, let us give thanks for the opportunity and dedicate this festive season to be one of peace, joy and happiness. In the meantime, stay safe. Remember, whatever happens, it will be the will of Yahweh concerning us. Blessings!
Freelance Journalist/Realtor/Business Consultant