January 01, 2008
Nevisians can expect continued emphasis in every area of people empowerment through social and economic transformations. Premier of Nevis Hon. Joseph Parry made the disclosure as he ushered in the New Year in a televised and radio address on January 01, 2008.
He described 2007 as a year with much success, as his team of Hon. Hensley Daniel, Hon. Robelto Hector, Hon Dwight Cozier and Hon. Carlisle Powell worked tirelessly to make life better for all Nevisians.
The island’s Senior Citizens he said had been the highest priority for the Nevis Island Administration and in 2008 it would continue to give its fullest support to them and seek to strengthen family bonds in each community as the great significance of family and family life continued to be highlighted.
In the area of training, Mr. Parry said a number of initiatives to address unqualified persons who left school. In the aftermath of short courses designed by the Ministry of Social Transformation and the Small Enterprise Development Unit (SEDU) in 2007, the matter he said would be addressed in a more strategic fashion and a small team from a training institution in Trinidad would visit Nevis.“The purpose of the visit is two-fold. Firstly, the team will be meeting contractors and mechanics to determine their needs. Out of this exercise will emerge a training programme to be implemented locally.
“This programme will be tailored for the many youngsters who have just left school or those who have been out of work or who have been unfortunate not to have been exposed to training in any form,” he said.
Also, 15 persons with leadership potential in communities throughout the island would be identified for training in Trinidad.
“On their return to Nevis they will be expected to be role models in their community in a way to discourage delinquency and idleness and to promote positive behaviour and a healthy attitude to work,” he said.
Training will also be continued in the Community Centres where men and women will be exposed to utility training, cottage type activities and home development to complement the new initiatives. The Centres would also be used for research, computer type activities and recreation.
These activities Mr. Parry explained, would have a component associated with a Unit that was being established to resolve the issues of absentee parents and problems in the home. The objective of which would be to strengthen the family unit and to help the young people of Nevis to adjust to the changing demands of our society.
With regard to education, Premier Parry said much had been done to strengthen the education system on the island. He announced that the new St. Johns Primary School would be opened in January but at the moment, efforts were being made to secure the area.
A nearby pond and the school’s compound were being fenced and later in the year a playfield would be established on the Flats for use by the school and the community.
He also addressed the problem of overcrowding at the Charlestown Primary School which he said would be alleviated in January with the availability of four additional classrooms. However, a long term plan would include the purchase of more lands in the area and the expansion of the school.
Also, all primary schools would receive a new computer system in 2008, while the Schools Meals Programme would be introduced at the St. Johns Primary early in the New Year.
He said overcrowding in the Charlestown Secondary School’s would be addressed. That learning institution would also receive an additional four class rooms in 2008 though the long term plan for the school was being formulated for presentation to a funding agency for consideration.
The Gingerland Secondary School’s roof would also receive attention.
Notwithstanding, Mr. Parry said the Department of Education would be reorganized to deliver the strongest support to the island’s schools; the ongoing training of teachers would continue to be a priority and the support for trained teachers would be given to ensure the delivery of good education to the students and that a proper incentive programme for teachers would be completed before September 2008.
The programme would supplement the efforts the Administration had given to teachers in training and those who have graduated from the Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College.
He used the opportunity to appeal to all parents to support the Homework Assistance Programme which was highly regarded regionally and would be funded by an external agency later in 2008.
In the area of rising food prices, Mr. Parry said the Nevis Government would continue to address the situation through the establishment of a food basket of basic food supplies and would seek to control the prices of those items; would continue to make land available to Nevisians at an affordable rate and would seek to adapt a number of measures outlined in the People’s Agenda to assist the people of Nevis.
However, Mr. Parry anticipated that 2008 would be another bountiful year for Nevis, when his Administration’s hard work would pay dividends. He referred to a number of projects slated to commence in January which would have a profound impact on the island’s economy and to provide long term employment.
According to the Premier, the Administration would continue to prepare Nevisians to take their rightful place in the development of Nevis.