Hon. Archibald Christian, Junior Minister of Tourism
Photo Credit: BVI Platinum News
Calls continue for BVIslanders to be given a fair shot at job opportunities, both in government and the private sector. Government members, Hon. Archibald Christian, Junior Minister of Tourism and Hon. Alvera Maduro-Caines, Sixth District Representative recently raised the issue.
"I feel too many of our people are being held back from top positions which I know they can do well in; not just in government, but also in the private sector," lamented Hon. Maduro-Caines.
Hon. Christian said, "I am concerned with some of the hiring practices that currently exist in government, government statutory bodies and some private sector organizations, to the point where some of our people are not given a fair opportunity or are being left behind."
The Junior Minister of Tourism said that he intends to speak more on the issue this year.
The National Democratic Party (NDP) government has been accused of not standing up for locals when it comes to hiring practices. Positions such as Commissioner of Police, Director of Public Prosecutions, and recently, CEO of the BVI Health Services Authority are being held by expats.
With regards to the CEO of the BVI Health Services Authority position, Opposition Leader, Hon. Julian Fraser had publicly criticized the government for the appointment of Trinidad native, Mrs. Paula Chester-Cumberbatch over BVIslander, Dr. Ronald Georges, who is the Chief Medical Officer of Health.
He specifically criticized Premier Hon. Dr. Orlando Smith for not taking a stand against the continued sidelining of BVIslanders for senior positions in government.
"The leader of this Territory has to take the stand; that enough is enough and no longer can the BVI be viewed from outside as fair game. Our people come first," Hon. Fraser said in September.