BASSETERRE, ST. KITTS, JANUARY 4TH, 2017 (PRESS SEC) — Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris is among the dignitaries in attendance at the Official Funeral Service that is being accorded to the late Honourable Sir K. Dwight Venner. The funeral service is being held this afternoon [Wednesday, January 4th, 2017] at the Minor Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Castries, St. Lucia.

Sir K. Dwight Venner, who served as Governor of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) from December 1989 to November 2015, passed away in St. Lucia on December 22nd, 2016.

On December 23rd, 2016, Prime Minister Harris issued a written press statement reflecting on the life and legacy of Sir Venner.

The Honourable Prime Minister’s statement read in part: “I extend my heartfelt condolences to the late Honourable Sir K. Dwight Venner’s wife, Lady Lynda Arnolde Winville Venner, and their children, as well as his brothers, friends and former bank staff and colleagues…Sir Venner succeeded Sir Cecil Jacobs as the second Governor of the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank, taking on the mantle of leadership for the next 26 years, a period that saw significant growth and expansion in its operations and in the economy of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU). Along his remarkable career path, Sir Venner skillfully steered the organization, demonstrating financial prudence and acumen, as well as a high-level understanding of international and monetary economics.

“Moreover, Sir Venner’s excellent leadership skills coupled with his affability served to inspire and motivate his staff and colleagues, and commanded the respect and friendship of Heads of Government, the ECCB Monetary Council membership, bankers and financial industry leaders around the Caribbean and the globe.”

The Press Unit in the Office of the Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis also released an audio statement by Dr. Harris on December 23rd.

The Honourable Prime Minister, who serves as the Minister of Finance, said in the audio statement that, “The fact that he [the late Honourable Sir K. Dwight Venner] presided over the stability of the [Eastern Caribbean] Currency Union made our currency one of the strongest in the world in terms of its stability and its backing by U.S. foreign currency, and so he will be and is a major loss to the Currency Union – as an academic, an integrationist, one who laboured hard in the vineyard for the economic development of our small islands, and one who carried the burden of the development challenge from the vantage point of monetary policy and carried that burden gracefully, and as a result of his astute leadership brought great reputation and reputational benefits to the Currency Union and to our currency.  So he is gone, but he will not be forgotten.”

Dr. Harris further stated in the audio clip that, “On behalf of the Cabinet at the Federal level and the NIA [Nevis Island Administration], I extend our deepest and most sincere condolences to his family, close friends and the Central Bank, which will mourn this deep and burdensome loss of Sir Dwight’s availability, knowledge and experience, and indeed to the wider constituency of the Currency Union and all Member States whose citizens and residents benefited as a result of the wise counsel that Sir Dwight so often proffered to the people and in particular to the Monetary Council.  May his soul rest in eternal peace, and the legacy that he has left with us be built upon and our region be strengthened as a result of his brilliance and leadership…May God bless his soul!”

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