PM Harris ‘encouraged’ by large Toronto turnout


BASSETERRE, St. Kitts – The prime minister, the Honourable Dr. Timothy Harris, says he has “been inspired to serve the people of the federation of St. Kitts and Nevis with even greater distinction after a highly successful engagement with a broad cross section of citizens residing in Ontario, Canada.”

Around 150 nationals of the federation took time out from their Father’s Day barbecues and other family engagements to hear directly from the prime minister of St. Kitts and Nevis and the country’s minister of foreign affairs, the Honourable Mark Brantley, on a wide range of issues during a town hall styled meeting at the Toronto Don Valley Hotel and Suites.

Harris delivered a presentation on his vision of “progressive and ennobling St. Kitts and Nevis, in which citizens can empower themselves through their hard work, creativity and faith in God.”

He addressed issues relating to the management of the economy, the record level of employment in the country quoted by Social Security and the accolades the federation has received from the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB), the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on the “outstanding fiscal and economic performance” of St. Kitts and Nevis.

Harris also informed the gathering of the government’s efforts to empower the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) through the Fresh Start programme, the challenges to growth and the vitiating impact of crime on the “Prosperity for All” agenda.

Harris went on to encourage the nationals living abroad to invest in their homeland and to “help build a federation of which we could all be proud.”

Brantley spoke on matters relating to the unprecedented level of cooperation that exists between the Dr. Harris-led Team Unity government and the Vance Amory-led Nevis Island Administration (NIA), St. Kitts and Nevis’ diplomatic outreach, the country’s Citizenship by Investment Programme (CBI) and the rationale for the opening of the federation’s high commission in Canada.

A lively question-and-answer session, which followed the ministers’ presentations, helped further educate and elucidate citizens’ concerns regarding law and order, education quality, employment opportunities, programmes for at-risk youths, impact of the free movement of CARICOM nationals and the status with respect to a new prison facility.

The meeting was preceded by an on-air interview earlier on Sunday on the popular radio station G98.7FM, which has a reach of over 1 million listeners each week.