The following is the inaugural address by Prime Minister Philip J Pierre, at the swearing ceremony, July 28, 2021
By Prime Minister Philip J Pierre
It has been a long and difficult journey. One that began when a child was born to Auguste, a policeman and Evelyn a teacher. This child grew to be a man always underestimated sometimes ridiculed as a stutterer but only this child knew that with the help of God, patience, dedication and hard work he would one day rise to be able to serve his people with love and humility.
I thank God for carrying me thus far. I shall require divine intervention and guidance in the coming days and grace in fulfilling the hopes and aspirations of the people of Saint Lucia.
I want to thank the people of Saint Lucia and especially my constituents of Castries East for their support and show of confidence to lead this country over the next five years.
I want to thank the members and executives of the Saint Lucia Labour Party (SLP) and team Labour 2021. We have run a highly organized, effective and clean political campaign and kept on message remaining focused on the issues.
I would like to express my most profound gratitude to you the residents and citizens of this beautiful land, who have honoured your sacred obligation in our democratic society by exercising your franchise. You went out and peaceably registered your voice, not only in support for me and the Saint Lucia Labour Party but against the things you thought were wrong about the direction we were heading.
Naturally not all of you voted for me and my party. Some of you did not, for whatever reason, share our views on the direction we should be heading. Thankfully, the majority were of a particular view, and that is, the country needed to be rescued from the abyss into which it was plunging. The majority of you accepted my offer to lead the rescue mission.
Though I offered to do so with a team of 15 men and women, representing an excellent blend of experience and youthful energy, the full rescue team includes all of you.
As prime minister, I promise to be prime minister for not some of the people but all the people. The Saint Lucia Labour Party has won the general elections, however, we now have to manage an inclusive, equitable and just society.
I believe that our island can be one where the dignity of the human person is preserved and respected.
- Where our citizens are treated equally and given the opportunity to grow and achieve their full potential.
- Where the poor and less fortunate and vulnerable members of our society and protected and assisted by the government to achieve a decent quality of life.
- Where human rights of all are guaranteed by the government to all citizens.
- Where there is equal economic opportunity for all and the resources of the State are used to benefit the majority of the people since there can be no economy without people.
- Where All citizens can discuss freely the economic political and social affairs in the country free from political victimization or retribution.
- Where our patrimony is respected and our environment preserved.
In the coming days, I shall be announcing my Cabinet of ministers to manage the affairs of the country. I ask all those serving on the Boards and Statutory Bodies to prepare reports on their tenure so that there can be a smooth transition.
My sisters and brothers, this is the start of a new beginning for our country, as your servant leader, I shall serve all the citizens of the country regardless of their social class or station in life. The task ahead will not be easy, but, together with my team of able and experienced men and women, we will deliver to the people of Saint Lucia.
I ask for your patience, in the coming weeks and months, as we try to assess the state of the country’s finances and capacity to deliver, as early as possible, the commitment made to the people of Saint Lucia.
Saint Lucia, we cannot fail. I will not fail you. I thank you for the opportunity to serve. I won’t do it alone, I will seek the counsel of the wise, and if you stand firm with me, together we shall not fail.
Allow me to end with a quote from Nelson Mandela:
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear but triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid but he who conquers that fear.”
I reaffirm my pledge to #Putting You First.
Together our island will prosper.