A two-fold handing over ceremony has gifted three new boats and engines as well as much needed safety supplies and fishing gear to several of the fisher-folks in the Roseau Central Constituency.
On July 5, 2019, Dominica Labour Party (DLP) announced candidate for the Roseau Central constituency Melissa Skerrit, in partnership with the Government of Dominica through the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries, and Developer for Tranquility Beach Resort Dominica, Ian George made the donation to the fisher-folks who were affected by Hurricane Maria in 2017.
Addressing the ceremony, Mrs Skerrit pledged her commitment to get the individuals “back on their feet.”
“We have been able to address some of the concerns that you have brought to me personally, the minister and the prime minister the past couple of weeks. I recognize that all of you are hard working men, and all of you have been affected
by hurricane Maria and it was quiet disheartening when I heard the accounts of the huge losses that you suffered by the loss of your boat, your fishing pots, your nets, your machines and the general cry was that of your inability to bounce back
fully post Maria and I want to use this opportunity to assure you of my commitment to getting you back on your feet,” she said.
She went on to highlight that such doing will not happen overnight, however gave the commitment that each individual will receive assistance.
“After many conversations with quite a few of you here, I could not view your situations as a simple result of a natural disaster. I could see that it was a serious social and economic problem which could undoubtedly affect everyone of us here in Dominica and this struck me as a situation where it had to be addressed immediately,“ the newly announced candidate stated. “it should be noted that many of the fisherman here are the bread winners of their homes and who bear all the financial burden and I can only imagine the difficulties that you have faced and the frustration you have encountered from Maria until now.”
She went on to emphasize that the fishing industry is evolving therefore called on the fisher-folk within the constituency to make use of the support provided by the Government.
According to her, “it is important to note that the government has always been instrumental in the provision of your needs and will continue to maintain this relation…I would like to encourage you to grasp the opportunity to team up with Tranquility Beach Resort and all the other five star resorts which are coming soon. We are the nature island and when the tourist come here they would want to have fresh fish and not imported frozen seafood.”
Mrs Skerrit also pledged to forge a greater relationship with fisher folks across the island.