The future rests in our hands
October 22, 2004
The future rests in our hands

My fellow Vincentians, it is indeed a great honour for me to address you on this the silver anniversary of the independence of our beloved country, St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

This is a moment in our history of which we should be justly proud, and as in all things, we must give thanks to the Almighty who has guided us safely to this milestone. {{more}}

As we celebrate this joyous event, we must take time for reflection, introspection and forward planning. At only 25 years old, St. Vincent and the Grenadines is a young nation, but no one can doubt that we have made very significant gains during that short period of time. In fact, our progress in areas like housing, health care and education, has been outstanding, and as a nation we thank all those persons, Vincentians and non-Vincentians, who have worked tirelessly over the years towards the development of our homeland.

At this juncture in our history, it is necessary to examine the major problems that we face as a nation. I refer to the high level of unemployment, the spiraling increase in violent crimes committed by and against our citizens, the unacceptable level of poverty at which too many of our citizens live, and the impact of globalization on our fragile economy. These are formidable challenges that we must face, but Vincentians are a resolute and resilient people and I am convinced that we will harness the skill and talent of the nation to join the struggle as we move forward to face and ultimately surmount these adversities.

Let us hold fast to the vision and foresight of those persons who fought so valiantly for our independence. They envisioned for us a society where all persons are guaranteed equal opportunities, a society comprised of people who are proud, respected and equipped to take their rightful place among all nations of the world.

As we immerse ourselves in the celebrations to mark this, our silver jubilee, we must ask ourselves if we have done justice to the opportunity they have given us. On the 27th of October, 2004 let us, with a fire of patriotism that should burn within us every day of the year, rededicate ourselves to the task of building our nation.

Through the grace and eternal mercy of Almighty God and working together as a unified people, we will succeed in building a future of hope, happiness and prosperity for this and all future generations. Remember always that “a house divided cannot stand”. Now more than ever, the future rests in our hands.

May God continue to bless, guide and protect us.