by Eulana Weekes
St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): The inauguration ceremony of the elected and nominated ministers of Nevis was held on Sunday afternoon, December 18, 2022, at the Elquemedo T. Willett Park to mark the commencement of a new five year term for the Nevis Island Administration.
Six days after the Nevis Island Assembly Elections- won by the Concerned Citizens Movement, four male and one female each took the ministerial Oath of Office and Oath of Secrecy, as they now chart the way forward for the island.
Honourable Mark A.G. Brantley is the Premier of Nevis and will oversee the Ministry of Finance, Statistics, Economic Planning, Human Resources, Industry, Trade and Consumer Affairs, Tourism, Public Utilities and Energy, Foreign Investments, Government Information Service and Nevis Television.
Honourable Eric R. Evelyn is the new Deputy Premier of Nevis. He is responsible for the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Natural Resources, Fisheries, Cooperatives, Culture and Housing.
Honourable Spencer R. Brand has been assigned the portfolios for the Ministry of Communications, Works, Water Services, Physical Planning and Environment, Posts, Labour and Disaster.
Honourable Uthant Troy J.T. Liburd returns to Government as a Senator. He has ministerial responsibility for the Ministry of Education, Information Technology, Library Services, Youth and Sports.
The lone female, Honourable Mervil Jahnel Nisbett was sworn in for the first time as a Senator. She has responsibility for the Ministry of Health, Gender Affairs, Community Affairs and Social Services.
Premier of Nevis, Hon. Mark Brantley, during his inaugural address encouraged both the youth and the elderly to work together with the Government to ensure the best way forward for Nevis.
“We have much work to do and tomorrow the work begins. There are jobs to be created, schools to be built, roads to be repaired, a hospital to be outfitted, but this cannot be done by the Government alone. As a small island state, our resources are stretched and limited. We will need the help of our greatest resource; the strength, courage, creativity and tenacity of our people. In the days, weeks and months ahead, we need to utilise the untapped energy of our elderly and the boundless talents of our youth. We pledge as a new Government with a fresh mandate to work with you hand in hand, engaging you every step of the way. We propose to consult and together to forge the best way forward.”
The Government, according to the premier, will seek in the new term to create a better economic and social environment for the citizens and residents of Nevis; but, suggested that, when the people have climbed up the ladder, they should not focus on what they have, but should also aim to encourage and uplift others.
“In the term ahead, my Government pledges to create a social and economic order that will enable the destitute and marginalised to climb the economic ladder out of poverty. Our objective here will be to help such ones to enjoy a better life and to reap the fruits of the promise of our island and our nation; but in our quest for social and economic mobility, we should never allow ourselves to be defined by our possessions, as so often has become the case. Our possession should never become the measure of our worth and our lives. We should not only endeavour to leave our children or our loved ones a big bank account, big house or fancy car; we should seek to bequeath them a sense of what is right and wrong, what it means to be a loyal friend, a loving parent and good neighbours. Today I employ you to seek common good with all men, to defend what is all right, just and decent.”
The Premier also expressed gratitude to all individuals who played an integral role in ensuring the CCM’s success at the polls.
“Thanks to Jehovah God for allowing me to stand here today. Thanks to my team for their hard work. Thanks to the people of Nevis for their consistency in reposing their trust and their confidence in us. Thanks to our election officials for ensuring that the election was free and fair and the results reflective of the true will of the people of Nevis. Our democracy is alive and well; and for that, we must all be proud.”
The Concerned Citizens Movement won three of five seats at the Monday, December 12 Nevis Island Assembly Elections. The party won districts one, two and three, thus returning to Cabinet. Alexis Jeffers did not return to Cabinet, having lost to Dr. Janice Daniel-Hodge in District four. Hazel Brandy- Williams also did not return as Senator as she tendered her resignation prior to the election.