Dubai, United Arab Emirates (25th November 2016) – Approximately 300 citizens and friends of St. Kitts and Nevis in Dubai joined in the celebration recognizing the 33rd Anniversary of Independence during a gala dinner held in the renowned Dubai ballroom at the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel, Business Bay on November 24, 2016.
Guest of Honour, His Excellency Dr. Rashid Ahmed Mohammad Al Fahed – Minister of State in the UAE Government and several other members of the diplomatic corps in the region were in attendance. Consul General at the Consulate of St. Kitts and Nevis in Dubai, Mr. Justin Hawley gave his inaugural speech and conveyed special greetings from the Honourable Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris.
The Honourable Mark Brantley, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Aviation addressed the audience and reassured citizens they are welcomed, loved and are an integral part of the tapestry of St. Kitts and Nevis. He encouraged citizens to respect and protect the reputation of their country. Citizens received an invitation to come “home” and experience what St. Kitts and Nevis has to offer both for leisure and investment. Minister Brantley had high praise for the Consulate staff who organized the prestigious event and was pleased to learn that scores of citizens in attendance intended to visit St. Kitts and Nevis in the next few months.
The night was made extra special by introducing a twist of true local culture, art and culinary delights to the experience, all to the enjoyment of the attendees. Entertainment for the welcome reception consisted of live steel pan music; Nevisian artist Mr. Vaughn Anslyn displayed several pieces of his art works in the ballroom foyer; and the food catering by the hotel adapted recipes from Mr. Telsa Johnson, a Kittitian Executive chef who currently works at another Marriott property in the UAE, to produce a sampling of local cuisine including goat water, johnny cakes, fried plantains, pumpkin fritters, rice and peas, and black cake added to the banquet spread.
Awards of appreciation were presented to Mr. Mohammed Motevassel, Mrs. Giselle Bru, Ms. Rowaida Hakim and Media Motion Public Relations for their consistent support to the Consulate General over the past year. Additionally, Mr. Vaughn Anslyn was recognized with a plaque for his recent contribution to the Consulate. Anslyn volunteered his time and expertise to paint a mural depicting life in St. Kitts and Nevis on a wall in the new offices of the Consulate General of St. Kitts and Nevis after having been relocated to the Dubai Marina area earlier this month.
The evening closed out with over an hour of casual conversations between and among citizens, Minister Brantley, Consul General Hawley and Deputy Consul General Wilkin-Armbrister.
Minister of Foreign Affairs Mark Brantley with Guest of Honour, His Excellency Dr. Rashid Ahmed Mohammad Al Fahed – Minister of State of the UAE
H.E. Dr. Rashid Ahmed Mohammed Al Fahed, Hon. Mark Brantley and Ambassador Abdulrahman Ganem Almutaiwee arriving at the gala.
L-R: Ahmed Almulla, H.E Abdulrahman Ghanem Almutaiwee, H.E. Dr. Rashid Ahmed Mohammed Al Fahed , Minister Mark Brantley, CG Justin Hawley, Deyab Rashidi Consul General -Kuwait, and Deputy CG Mrs. Elsa Wilkin-Armbrister
Cutting the cake the traditional UAE way – with a sword
Cross section of the audience at the gala
Mrs. Giselle Bru accepting her award
Mr. Vaughn Anslyn accepting his award from Mr. Brantley