It was back in 1987 that Mr. Joseph Parry first entered the arena of politics when he was elected to the Nevis Island Assembly.
After heading the Nevis Civil Service for the first four years post-Independence (1983-1987), Parry, was elected on an NRP ticket to the lawmaking body on December 14, 1987, and served as Minister of Tourism, Agriculture and Labour from 1987 to 1992, under Nevis’ first Premier, the late Dr. Simeon Daniel. It was under Daniel’s watch that Nevis saw the construction and opening of the island’s flagship hotel, and first 5-Star hotel in the Caribbean – the 196-room Four Seasons Resort – which quickly became the envy of the entire Caribbean.
Parry, a staunch Anglican, will celebrate his 25th anniversary with fellow Cabinet members, family, well-wishers and constituents at the St. Thomas’ Anglican Church on Sunday (December 16th), from 8:00am, said a release from his office.
In an interview Friday morning with the Nevis Department of Information, Premier Parry said he is proud of his many years of service to the people of Nevis, particularly St. Thomas’ parish, which has been supportive of him and his Nevis Reformation Party (NRP) for many years.
Premier Parry indicated that over the years he has experienced many challenges, personal and career-wise, but a number of close friends and well-wishers have encouraged and supported him, enabling him to keep his head up, and continue his good work on behalf of his beloved people.
In commemoration of his 25 years in Parliament, Premier Parry visited the homes of 25 elderly supporters from St. Thomas’ parish and gave them each a gift basket last Friday evening.
When co-founder, long-standing leader and first Premier, the late Dr. Simeon Daniel (premier from 1983-1992) retired from politics after the NRP lost at the polls in June 1992, Parry was unanimously elected as leader of the Nevis Reformation Party. Parry led the NRP for the next 14 years in Opposition, displaying tenacity, graciousness, patriotism and calm in difficult times.
According to the release from his office, Premier Parry took the reins of government in July 2006, inheriting an island with very little private sector growth, poor roads, a limited water supply and a demoralized civil service. By October 2008, the island witnessed the closure of the Four Seasons Resort after it was hit by Hurricane Omar, and shortly thereafter Nevis suffered a “double whammy”, and was buffeted by the worst global recession since the Great Depression of the late 1920’s early 1930’s.
When asked what has been his motivation over the years , Parry said ,”People first and foremost, as I believe helping people, empowering people and working to make the country of your birth a better place is the greatest motivation.”