NASPA on the Mends! One do not have to go further than the Samuel Hunkins Drive to observe the restoration work done to the derelict concrete balusters along the road side. The truth is that NASPA is truly on the mends. Over 100 balusters had to be replaced or repaired and partially painted with street sign paint. The work done certainly uplifts the surroundings and creates better vision especially to drivers of vehicles, in helping to keep them off the concrete poles. Attention is being paid to the terminal building at the Vance Amory airport that was neglected throughout the NRP tenure, 2006 – 2013. Cleaning the building is in slow progress and other needed maintenance requirements are being addressed. Long Point port is also being seriously addressed. NASPA during the NRP administration tenure seemed to turn a blind eye to the ports on Nevis. The Vance W. Amory airport was under constant verbal attack by government ministers and supporters. No attempt was made to clean and upgrade the facility while air travel to and from our airport decreased to a mere trickle. Charlestown port seemed to be on auto pilot without direction. The entire facility there seemed out of control and lacked supervision. Nothing significant was done to enhance the esthetics of the ports. On the contrary, things there deteriorated terribly. The plot seemed to have been to completely neglect NASPA’s at all 3 locations at Long Point, Charlestown and the Vance W. Amory airport. NASPA is presently bouncing back after years of mismanagement, neglect and abuse. To add insult to injury, NASPA is cash strapped. It must be noted that NASPA had decent funds in the bank in 2006 and presently it is millions of miles away from where it was then. NASPA was created back in 1996 and early tragedy struck when hurricane Lenny destroyed the newly built pier at Long Point. Like any new organization, NASPA was in a cash strapped situation. Although it was a daunting and sorrowful state, under the brilliant and astute chairmanship of Mr. Colin Dore, the task and challenges were handled expertly and by 2006 when NRP took over the reins of government, NASPA was in a healthy position and attracted high praise from the new premier, Joseph Parry. Apart from having money in the bank in July, 2006, NASPA had an effective working staff and dedicated hard-working employees. The employees ensured NASPA was the #1 port in the Caribbean. NASPA thrived well and the proud entity was highly respected as could be viewed by all. The first mistake of the day for the new administration in July 2006 was to install a new rookie manager. With no port working experience the new manager was immediately put in place over the then acting manager and the rest is now history. Morale started a steady downhill decline, financial resources ebbed away and all 3 ports were in jeopardy and suffered tremendously. That manager was subsequently terminated in 2011. A new Board of Directors is presently in place under the renewed chairmanship of Mr. Colin Dore. As instituted by the recently elected CCM government, the 40% cut in allowance applies. NASPA have now appointed a knowledgeable, effective general manager, Mr. Oral Brandy. Mr. Brandy acted as acting manager since 1995 and resumed that role when the manager was terminated in 2011. Mr. Brandy is highly competent and has a wealth of experience. A certified accountant along with outstanding managerial skills, NASPA is presently in good hands. NASPA have ensured the TSA requirements are being adhered to by having adequate staffing on shifts at the airport, thus removing the fear of sanctions or handed down interruptions. Another positive move is the return of former manager for Charlestown, Mr. Ken Pemberton. Mr. Pemberton was glowingly instrumental in ensuring the Charlestown port was a sight to behold and kept in exemplary shape during his tenure. The future looks bright once again as Mr. Pemberton is presently back on the job. It is the intent to have NASPA back to the glory days when the day to day running is smooth, staff morale tops, a more business-like and friendly relationship with customers and those who use the facilities. Of course, increasing revenue is of great importance and finding ways and means to attract business, and control and expenditures is a present goal that is clearly achievable. Priority will be given to increase airlift and revive activities at the VW Amory International Airport from the San Juan route. NASPA is happy to welcome the start of operations by Trade Winds Aviation in October 2013 and discussions are progressing with other airline operators to fly the San Juan – Nevis route. Rest assured! NASPA is on the mends. NASPA is in good hands.
- 5 years ago
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