Barnes Ghaut-Nevis-The now annual Barnes Ghaut/Simeon Daniel Day Celebration, was commemorated on Friday 16th September-National heroes’ day.
There was much food; music and frolic. However, the centerpiece of the day, was the annual ceremony which was ably chaired by Mr. Anselm Caines.
Speaking on behalf of the Daniel’s family, daughter of the late Barnes Ghaut born hero, Mrs. Janice Hodge, made a passionate appeal for a permanent structure on Nevis, to be named in honour of the man who holds the distinction of being the first Premier of Nevis.
Mrs. Hodge took time out to explain that the order of national hero was instituted in 1996 and indicated that it is the highest order of merit bestowed by the government of St. Kitts and Nevis, on any citizen who has made significant contribution to the advancement of the nation.
She pointed out that Sir Simeon Daniel is the fourth person to be so honoured.
She spoke to his passion for the independence of Nevis and his passion for the education of his people. She stated that Dr. Daniel realized that for a people to be truly independent, they needed to be well prepared educationally and so he was instrumental in ensuring that preschools were put in place; the Nevis sixth form college; the Multipurpose center and he ensured the training of civil servants.
He also led out in ensuring that the following became reality: The Four Seasons Resort; the Bank of Nevis and the land reform initiative.
She referred to her late dad as a visionary and one who lived out the true meaning of the nation’s motto: ‘Country above self.’ ‘He was a servant leader,’ she declared.
She noted however, that she recently received a call from a parent who was obviously assisting her child with some homework, asking about a structure on Nevis that was named in honour of Sir Daniel. She stated that she sadly had to respond that there was none.
She noted that significant buildings and institutions have been named in honour of other great men in the country such as the Joseph N France General Hospital; The Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College; The Vance Amory Int. Airport; the Robert Llewellyn Bradshaw Airport (RLB) and much more but nothing in honour of Sir Daniel.
She admitted however that there were previous discussions which included the naming of the Airport and the NEPAC building. She however stated that as regards the airport, Dr. Daniel scoffed at the idea, indicating that an airport can be renamed any day and as regards the NEPAC building, he stated that he did not know anything about arts.
Mrs. Hodge however proposed the now Nevis Sixth form college, be named in honour of her late father, because of his tremendous contribution to education. ‘I think that is where he will feel most comfortable,’ she said.
She urged that the renaming be completed as soon as possible, so that by next heroes’ day when the question is raised, the answer can proudly come back that there is indeed a signigficant structure named in his honour.
Also speaking at the ceremony, was Area Representative Hon. Joseph Parry, who also spoke in glowing terms as to the contributions of Sir Simeon Daniel and some of the other village stalwarts.
Representing the Hon. Hazel Brandy –Williams, who was unavoidably absent, was Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Social Development, Mr. Keith Glasgow, who also made brief remarks.
Interspersed with the speeches, were some dynamic presentations in poetry and dance, featuring individuals from the village.
Two of the village stalwarts in Mrs. Eileen Liburd and Ms. Eglantine Dubberry, received special awards for 2016 and 2015 respectively.
Community Development Officer, Mrs. Lydia Thompson –Claxton also revealed the list of the new inductees to the tribute wall on the mural, which is located in the center of the village, as follows: Beryl Licointe; Dora Isles-Wenham; Joseph JOB Daniel and Walter Thompson.