September 25, 2023

Bahamas Independence/CARICOM chairman wants UNITY

Pin It

Residents attend Ecumenical services of Thanksgiving in East and West Grand Bahama in honor of the 41st Anniversary of Independence

Ecumenical_bThe Thanksgiving Service for residents of West Grand Bahama

Thursday July 3, 2014, Freeport, Grand Bahama Island – Celebrations for the 41st Anniversary of Independence of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas began with an Ecumenical Church Service of Thanksgiving which was held in East Grand Bahama at The Emmanuel Baptist Church in McLean’s Town on Thursday July 26th at 7 p.m. Residents from settlements across East Grand Bahama came together for an evening of praise, worship and thanksgiving. Ministers from churches in East Grand Bahama participated in the evening service and the message was delivered by Pastor Edwin Pinder, Senior Pastor of Emmanuel Baptist Church, McLean’s Town.

The Thanksgiving Service for residents of West Grand Bahama was held on Monday June 30th at 7 p.m. at St. Mary Magdalene Anglican Church in West End. Many persons braved the inclement weather to join the collective for a time of worship and reflection on the country’s journey of Independence from July 10th, 1973 to the present time. The evening’s message was brought by Rector Father Ian Claridge and Ministers from churches throughout West Grand Bahama also participated in the service.

The theme for the 2014 Independence Celebrations is “Celebrating Our Culture – A Commitment To Peace”. Both services were attended by The Minister for Grand Bahama The Hon. Dr. Michael Darville, who delivered remarks on behalf of The Government of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas.

The Thanksgiving services, which were planned by The Ministry for Grand Bahama in honor of the nation’s 41st Anniversary of Independence, will continue with an Ecumenical Service at Bethel Deliverance Center in Jones Town, Eight Mile Rock on Monday July 7th at 7pm. A Service of Thanksgiving and Flag Raising Ceremony will be held on Independence Park in Freeport on Wednesday July 9th at 6pm.

Uniting communities across the island of Grand Bahama is the main thrust behind the events planned for this year’s Independence Celebrations. The Ministry for Grand Bahama hopes to encourage a spirit patriotism in all residents during this significant time in our nation’s history.

(Photos courtesy of The Ministry for Grand Bahama)

For more on this story go to:


Incoming CARICOM Chairman stresses importance of “unity”

Paper people on green grass, close upBy Peter Richards From Caribbean360

ST. JOHN’S, Antigua, Wednesday July 2, 2014, CMC – Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders began their 35th annual summit here on Tuesday night with a reminder that the individual members countries of the regional integration grouping are too small and too vulnerable to sustain themselves in a changing global environment.

Newly elected Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne, the incoming chairman of the 15-member grouping, told the ceremony that unity was required to deal with an international community in which the rich and powerful achieve national advantage “even at the expense of the poor and weak.

“The prospects for our salvation lies today in that same practical principle that inspired it 49 years ago when three leaders set afloat the idea of integration into the Caribbean Sea that has washed up mightily on all our shores to create our Caribbean Community of today,” Browne told the audience.

Five of the regional leaders, including Suriname’s President Desi Bouterse, Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit, St. Lucia’s Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony, were not present at the ceremonial opening of the meeting.

Browne said that each Caribbean country continues to sail on the “same uncertain sea except we are now buffeted by economic, social, financial and environmental storms that are more intense than we have ever experienced and that threaten our very survival”.

He told the ceremony that while the sceptics may regard him as the new kid on the block, starting off at a gallop only to stumble at the first obstacle, he administration was determined to ensure that in the future the Caribbean people survive being plummeted from all sides, including unfair trade, severely reduced official development assistance and greater demands for costly regulation and enforcement in financial services.

“But as none of our countries can effectively negotiate on its own, in this international community for better deals in trade, debt and access to capital so too none of our countries can advance the work of reparations on its own,” he said, pledging his commitment to the Reparation Commission to achieve “reparatory justice for the victims of genocide, slavery, slave trading and racial apartheid”.

Browne said that 26 years ago, Caribbean leaders adopted the Grand Anse Declaration” as a means of responding to the challenges and opportunities presented by the changes in the global economy.

He said that a number of initiatives were identified and the implementation of which “were eagerly anticipated.

“The initiatives did not compromise national sovereignty or diminish in anyw ay the articular characteristics of our people, their objective as to work towards the establishment, in the shortest possible time, of a single market and economy for the Caribbean Community”.

But Prime Minister Browne said 25 years later, a single market is work unfinished and a single conomy is a work not yet begun.

“Had that work been undertaken, not by constantly looking over our shoulders at those with a vested interest in narrow insularity, but by steadfastly advancing to the goal of regional prosperity, might we not have been better off today as a stronger region with greater capacity to bargain in the global community?

Browne said that critical to the success of CARICOM as an integration movement are effective governance and free movement among others, telling his regional colleagues “let us all commit ourselves to the removal of all barriers to free movement and to accelerate the strengthening of the CARICOM Secretariat to perfect and advance the single market and economy.

“If we are serious about CARICOM as an instrument for the development of our countries and of the region, we should focus on a priority action plan that is strategically linked to achieving the core objectives of the single market and economy”.

Browne said that advancing the integration movement cannot be achieved by waiting for the “most reluctant of us to act” adding that “perhaps the time has come for integration by a coalition of the eilling in various sectors of the economy instead of allowing those who are reluctant to stymie our efforts to advance”.

He said for example, there could be collaboration between willing governments and the private sector in the ownership of productive operations in each other’s countries.

He said one or two governments can come together and invest in a project in a country with natural resources that culd be developed into a viable project that would create an income stream not only for the government in which the resources reside, but also the governments that would have invested in the venture.

“Similarly while one government might lack the credit standing to rasie money in the capita market, if two or more governments approach the market together with equity stakes in the projects they have a better chance of success,” he adde.

In his address, Browne acknowledged that unemployment among young people in the region as extremely high and suggested the establishment of a Commission “specifically to focus on the issue of youth unemployment in our region with a view to taking urgent action to tackle it.

“I suggest that if the idea of such a Commission meets the approval of this conference, evidence can be taken from young people across our region on how they see the issue being addressed,” Browne said, adding “our greatest task is to put our people to work”.

For more on this story go to:




Print Friendly, PDF & Email
About ieyenews

Speak Your Mind