August 04, 2007
For Immediate Publice Release
Premier of Nevis the Hon. Joseph Parry said it was important for the people Nevis, St. Kitts and the wider Caribbean to embrace each other and lend their support in local investment initiatives. His call came on Thursday August 04, 2007, at an official ceremony to launch the Sea Bridge Ferry Service at Cades Bay.
He said, too often the word investor was taken out of context and cited the Sea Bridge project in which local investors headed by Mr. Rawlinson Isaac CEO of Sea Bridge (SKN) Inc. had not receive the same treatment as foreign investors.
“The word investor must mean a person who wants to invest in a country, investor is supposed to have no colour, complexion or no rank. It should just be someone who wants to make some money for them and at the same time help to develop the country.
“I am very concerned that here in Nevis, sometimes when our own local people come forward, we tend to beat them down and we try to break them up. I have found it very strange in dealing with this particular project the attitude of many Nevisians towards Mr. Isaac and the project,” he said.Mr. Parry said he could not comprehend why in 2007 Nevisians could not understand the role they had to play in the development of their island.
“I think it has been shameful and disgraceful that in the year 2007, we still cannot understand the role that Nevisians have to play in their own country. You cannot develop your country if you are not part of the development. If you continue to be sweepers and cleaners and messengers then you are not part of the development”¦People of Nevis must have more pride than that.
“They need to understand that they need to be owners, we need to be managers, we need to be entrepreneurs and so my support is a million percent behind this project. I dare any physical planner and any opposition to challenge what we are doing here today and for them to say this is not development of Nevis,” he said.
While he gave the Nevis Island Administration’s blessing to the new ferry service, Mr. Parry acknowledged that the project would make life easier for Nevisians and Kittitians. He said the development of the Peninsula in St. Kitts and other developments at Cades Bay in Nevis would offer more opportunities, economic growth and the enhancement of both islands.
He called on the public to put aside politics in the interest of the development which affected the people of Nevis and St. Kitts and urged them to take advantage of the opportunities as they became available.
He said too that he had been approached by other persons who had invested in the Cades Bay area and following discussions they indicated the had no problems with the Sea bridge Project but would like to work with Mr. Isaac to ensure that it was a project was a quality one.
Mr. Parry said the Sea Bridge ferry service would enhance the existing ferry services that plied between Nevis and St. Kitts.
This is a passenger project”¦it does not compete with it actually enhances the movement of people between St. Kitts and Nevis”¦ Let it be known that this project enhances it does not detract in any particular way,” he said.
Meantime, Mr. Isaac said the project, though 73.8 percent completed was about the people of St. Kitts and Nevis. He pointed to a number of obstacles that had been encountered by the Board of Directors over the last two years and urged the public to support the project.
“It was not an easy task but a serious struggle because we had to encounter difficulties coming from the conservationists; we had difficulty with the people living in the area. We followed every rule in the book, we engaged consultants and international engineers, in total reports, I paid about $95,000. After all these struggles, I can say here is the pier. It is not the final product we have put in some serious work and I must tell you, you should see the pier in St. Kitts.’
“I am saying to you that Sea Bridge is not a small company, we are not small investors we are big investors and so we are advising you to support the initiative. We are here to stay we are not going anywhere we are passing this project over to the people, we can’t take it. What we are putting down here is a pier a piece of rock. It is going to outlive all of us, it is for the generations to come and for the generation after that generation,” he said.
Mr. Isaac noted, that work would continue on the project which would entail the enhancement of the landing area at Cades Bay and would be completed by the 2007 Independence celebrations in September but believed the time had come to move to another phase.
He said the project was not about him but rather was brought about by a local group of men of standing, finance, and integrity in the community.
“All I have had the privilege of doing is creating that coalition, creating that board of directors soliciting support from shareholders, stakeholders of course and putting together and providing a leadership that is necessary to see success. I think I have done my part and all I am here to do is to commend this project to the people of St. Kitts and Nevis,” he said.