by Linda Straker
Assuring the Nation that the changes he is embarking on will serve to increase service delivery in government at no additional cost to the taxpayers of this country, Prime Minister Dr Mitchell has made major changes to his cabinet which will include the revoking of one senator’s portfolio and appointing of a new senator.
The appointment which was announced on Tuesday night will come into effect on Friday, 1 July. The new senator will be Mrs Pamela Moses, a former principal of the St Andrew’s Anglican Secondary School who has given years of community service to the people of St Patrick and surrounding areas.
The incoming Senator will be appointed as the Parliamentary Secretary with specific responsibility for Youth and Religious Affairs, in the Ministry of Sports, Youth and Religious Affairs, which will now be headed by Honourable Roland Bhola.
Dr Mitchell said that Senator Sheldon Scott has given three and a half years of dynamic service and has proven himself competent in the area of articulating Government’s policy positions. “He will now be engaged full-time with, and paid by the New National Party in the areas of public relations and organization.”
“Minister Bhola, one of the most experienced members of our team, is taking over the Sports Ministry from the Minister who has served in that capacity for a number of years,” Dr Mitchell said.
The new Minister for Agriculture, Lands, Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment will be Honourable Yolande Bain–Horsford. “In the period in which she served as Tourism Minister, she made a great impact. Therefore, we are confident that she will bring that same record of success to help confront the varying challenges facing the Agriculture sector,” Dr Mitchell told the Nation.
She will be supported by another Minister and a Minister of State. Honourable Alvin Dabreo will continue as a Minister within that Ministry, with specific responsibility for Forestry and Fisheries while Senator Simon Stiell will be the Minister of State with specific responsibility for the Environment.
Senator Stiell will also continue as Minister of State in the Ministry of Education and Human Resource, with specific responsibility for Human Resource.
Also as of 1 July, the present Minister of Youth, Sports and Religious Affairs, Honourable Emmalin Pierre, who has long served in that area with energy and compassion, will be one of three Ministers in the Prime Minister’s Ministry.
She will bring that dynamism to her new area as the Minister of Implementation which was previously held by Hon Alexandra Otway–Noel.
“As we continue with our committment to deliver, this is a crucial area in helping to fulfil our promises. Two other critical areas for economic growth are the Citizenship by Investment Programme and the Waste Management programme,” he said, while announcing that Otway–Noel, who, over the last few months, has ably served those departments, will now be the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Ministry with special responsibility for Waste Management and the Promotion of the Citzenship by Investment Programme.
Back under the supervision of the Prime Minister will be Minister of State, Senator the Honourable Winston Garraway, who will be responsible for Disaster Management and Information.
Honourable Nickolas Steele, who is now the Minister for Health and Social Security, will have additional responsibility for International Business.
Honourable Oliver Joseph, the Minister for Economic Development, Trade, and Planning, who has had an exemplary public service career, inclusive of labour relations experience and trade unionism, will now have the Ministry of Labour added to his portfolio.
Describing Elvin Nimrod as a stalwart Deputy, the Prime Minister announced that he will continue to be the Minister for Carriacou and Petite Martinique Affairs and Legal Affairs, along with Foreign Affairs.
Honourable Clarice Modeste, now Minister for Foreign Affairs, is being asked to steer the ship as the new Minister for Tourism, Civil Aviation, Culture and Cooperatives, with specific responsibility for Tourism and Civil Aviation.
Senator Brenda Hood will continue as the Minister in that Ministry, with responsibility for Culture and Cooperatives.
Dr Mitchell said that several team members who might be juggling schedules and responsibilities need an opportunity to spend more time back on the ground, serving the very people who put them in office in the first place.
Explaining that the changes have been influenced by several critical considerations, the Prime Minister said that there is a growing need to provide more support in the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, which have additional challenges at this time.
“Within the Prime Minister’s extensive ministry, there is also a need for increased expertise, given the series of expanded services we are planning to undertake and manage in the coming period, such as paying executive attention to cost-savings and waste management within government, as well as a more vigorous focus on implementation, given the variety of projects that are either on stream or in train,” he said.
“With this reconfigured team, we look forward expectantly to this final period of this term, as we build on the achievements of the first three and a half years, and as we position our economy for a prolonged period of growth and opportunity,” he told the nation as he concluded his address.