BASSETERRE, St. Kitts - PRIME MINISTER Dr. Timothy Harris has joined the rest of the Federation in recognising the efforts and energy of St. Kitts and Nevis’ National Heroes, on a day specifically designated for them.
At a ceremony held this morning (Sept. 16) at the Heroes Park on the outskirts of Central Basseterre, Dr. Harris reminded that the National Honours Act honours individuals recognised to have made the greatest contribution to the advancement of the country.
These the five individuals: The Right Excellent Sir Robert Llewellyn Bradshaw, the Federation’s First Premier; former Premier and Chief Minister, the Right Excellent Sir Caleb Azariah Paul Southwell; the first Premier of Nevis, the Right Excellent Sir Dr. Simeon Daniel; the First Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, the Right Excellent and the Right Honourable Dr. Sir Kennedy Alphonse Simmonds; and Joseph N France have all assisted in developing the St. Kitts and Nevis.
While acknowledging that the five men are no different from the ordinary citizens, PM Harris noted that they “have been exalted above the rest of the citizenry because of their extraordinary contributions and sacrifices for the advancement of the cause of an independent St. Kitts and Nevis; lifted onto the shoulders of those who would have worked with and for them”.
In an effort to recognise and ensure that their memories live on, the government in 2017 sought to immortalise them at the National Heroes Park.
According to Dr. Harris, the hope is that they have expressed in a tangible way, the great respect and honour abiding in the hearts of the people for the work the five undertook to solidify the foundation “of an emerging and subsequently new nation, in a politically hostile and tumultuous world”.
“Daunting as it was, they persevered, and they achieved. What makes them different from us? Everything! Because they have done that which they had been called to do, and that makes all the difference. It is on us now to try and, in the words of today’s youth, ‘level up’,” Harris noted.
Against that backdrop, he called for the nurturing of the next generation of National Heroes who would ensure that the country continues to attain its fullest potential.
“It befalls us now to raise up the next generation of heroes; even as we reflect inwards, contemplating whether we will provide them as good an example. Those of us in the late Summer and Fall of our lives are the bridge between that great generation and the one that will succeed us. We have the example and inspiration of our forebears, coupled with the cause of and duty to our successors. We are indeed well armed to succeed, and succeed we shall, by the Grace of God…”
Dr. Harris added: “It is my hope that when the history of this period is written, it will catalogue the diligent work and the sacrifices made on individual, personal, party and national levels that have brought St. Kitts and Nevis the best inter-island relationship in our history thus far. It is a relationship not monetised in dollars and cents, but a sense of shared history, ancestry, hope for a stronger and safer future, resilient family ties and a belief in the power of unity.”