A new session of Parliament opened today with Governor General, the Most Hon. Cynthia Pratt reading the speech from the throne for the first time in Parliament Square.

The speech read in part, “the result is things are still too tough for far too many people especially the poor amongst us. We remain determined to do what we can to make things better. A new unit will be formed to review notice of vacancy processes to ensure that Bahamians have a fair opportunity to apply for all available jobs that are created as our economy grows and diversifies.”

The speech also spoke to the tourism industry as the government seeks to enhance the management of Downtown, Nassau with no legislation along with family island development projects.

Highlighted in the speech was the government’s intention to move forward with public service promotions announced by the the Minister of State for the Public Service, the Hon. Pia Glover-Rolle earlier this year. “Building on the progress already made in achieving an historic number of union agreements, my government will implement the first public service wide promotion exercise in nine years. Amendments to existing legislation will be proposed to prevent the current long standing backlog of overdue promotions and reclassifications happening again.”

The speech also promises that the government will establish a school for the performing arts, introduce a national maritime instruction and training bill, legislation for the protection of the elderly, a renewable energy bill, a national development plan bill and legislation regulating cannabis and hemp among other new legislation, amendments and initiatives.

A national service bill was also foreshadowed in the speech “that will invite our young citizens to register for national service. The participants in this program will serve to meet the needs on our vulnerable communities throughout The Bahamas.”

Photos: (BIS Photo/Letisha Henderson)