National Heroes Deserve the Right to Be Chosen Without Political Stigma

Basseterre, St. Kitts, October 09, 2015 (SKNIS): Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris, Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis, has voiced the public’s support with the Government’s actions for recognizing persons who have contributed to the development of St. Kitts and Nevis, during the radio programme ‘Working for You’ that was launched live on ZIZ radio on Wednesday, October 07.

“I believe that we have strong public support for the actions that we have taken and our efforts to create a new culture in the country,” said Dr. Harris, noting that as difficult as cultural changes are to come, we have to start somewhere.

Prime Minister Harris made special mention of the way National Heroes were chosen.

“One of the areas of concern had been the willful exclusion of people on account of their political affiliation,” Prime Minister Harris stated. “In that regard for a very long time, a significant proportion of the citizens of St. Kitts and Nevis were concerned that of all the National Heroes- all of them being politicians. The man who had successfully brought Independence to the country and had gone on to serve for some 12 successive years thereafter was not given his due honour.”

Dr. Harris said that based on the support that came from the citizens through the National Honours Awards Committee, his Government took the decision this year to approve the recommendations that Dr. the Right Honourable Sir. Kennedy Simmonds be considered a National Hero.

“The National Heroes Act required that the Prime Minister, if he finds favour, should forward that nomination to the Governor General,” he said, adding that he did this in consultation with the Cabinet. As such, Sir Kennedy Simmonds was announced as the fifth national hero of St. Kitts and Nevis on Wednesday, September 16, National Heroes Day.

The public also gave support to the government’s decision to rename the Jubilee Stadium, the Kim Collins National Stadium after Kittitian and Nevisian iconic athlete, Kim Collins.

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