Premier of Nevis, Vance Amory, while accepting the gift provided by the European Union, told officers that the fire tender has been requested to improve the level of equipment that they have had in Nevis, but he told them that it is his hope that they will not see any undue use of the vehicle.
“This piece of equipment which you will now have added to your store of equipment, will greatly enhance your ability to perform your duties in a much more efficient manner,” stated the Premier during an official handing over ceremony in Charlestown.
It was purchased at an approximate cost of US$350,000.00 with support from the 10th European Development Fund Safety and Security Improvement Programme.
Mr. Amory stated that the Nevis Disaster Management Department had been working closely with the Fire and Rescue Service Officers over the years and had told him of the lament and concerns they had over the years when they had to be part of a response team to fires and other difficulties they faced.
The Premier therefore thanked those who made the new fire tender a reality.
“I want to thank the former Fire Chief because he told me sometime last year, that this fire tender was being ordered and I know he was very keen on it coming and I want also to thank the Federal Government and the technical offices, the Prime Minister, the Minister of National Security and Homeland Security for pursuing this purpose to get this fire tender here for the use of the people of Nevis and to add also, my gratitude to the Governments of the European Union for providing the significant funds to acquire this fire tender,” explained the Premier.
Mr. Amory, however, registered hope that other areas related to security on Nevis would also receive much-needed assistance.
“I am hopeful that based on the overall discussion which the National Authorising Officer made, that this is part of a whole security and safety project funded by the EDF 10 that we see in response to the needs of the officers in the Police and the Fire Services because at the Airport, where there is a Fire Hall used by the Fire Officers…there are some challenges with that building…”
“There may even be challenges elsewhere but I know for a fact, that there are serious challenges where the Police Station at Newcastle is concerned and I trust that in the new year or at a convenient time, that there will be some funds made available to have that facility rebuilt, so that we can combine the total integrated service of security, providing the Police with their support as we are now providing the Fire and Rescue Services with their equipment,” he said.
Federal Minister of Homeland Security Patrice Nisbett said the provision of the vehicle is in keeping with the objective of providing adequate infrastructure and equipment for use by the emergency services.
He made it clear that the Federal Government will continue to upgrade policies and tools and initiate reforms to increase efficiency and improve the standard of service to the population of St. Kitts and Nevis.
While highlighting the recent refurbishment of the Fire Hall in Charlestown, Minister Nisbett stressed: “I remain committed to providing the required leadership necessary to advance the interest of all Nevisians and Kittitians. Together we will improve all areas of the service.”