Member of Parliament for West Grand Bahama and Bimini, Pakesia Parker-Edgecombe, who also serves as Parliamentary Secretary for Information and Communication in the Office of the Prime Minister admitted that the Free National Movement (FNM), realized coming into office in Grand Bahama at a time where many were calling for economic growth, would be a challenge.
Parker-Edgecombe made this statement, during a recent press conference as the FNM Government reflected on its first year in office, May 10.
Sharing an overview of her constituency’s progress over the past year, since the May 2017 General Election, Parker-Edgecombe said, “All of our efforts as a team has been directed in ensuring that we work as a team and listen to the concerns of our residents, and act upon those concerns.”
She noted that the team, which consist of Deputy Prime Minister K. Peter Turnquest (East Grand Bahama, MP); Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, Michael Pintard (Marco City, MP); Rev. Frederick McAlpine (Pineridge, MP) and Iram Lewis (Central Grand Bahama, MP), is strong and believes that in the coming months the Grand Bahama community will see that they did not make a mistake of voting them into office.
Parker-Edgecombe added that in West Grand Bahama they were fortunate enough to meet some projects already underway, including a new Junior High School and the Government Complex.
“With the completion of those, we realize that it’s going to bring employment to our community and that is something that we definitely look forward to,” she said.
Parker-Edgecombe noted that the appearance and health of the constituency is also an important factor.
“We want to ensure that when anybody comes to our community that they are welcomed with a clean and pristine environment,” she said.
Parker-Edgecombe took the opportunity to thank the Ministry of Works for their efforts with the Hurricane Roof Repair Initiative, as many constituents in the west were able to repair their homes in time for the coming Hurricane Season.
She furthered that the government is also focusing on single mothers and women’s issues, along with the youth in West Grand Bahama.
“A lot of single mothers are in our community both in West Grand Bahama and Bimini and we realize that moving forward, even in our first year, that we had to invest in our mothers and in our people,” she noted.
Parker-Edgecombe said that they are a very important part of the community and their empowerment is something that the government does not take for granted.
She added that the government will address their issues in a timely manner.
“Our first year we focused primarily on human resources and the empowerment of people,” she said.
According to Parker-Edgecombe, this was exemplified in the investment of young people in education, specifically with people going off to school and donating to the schools in the community.
She revealed that one of the initiatives the government, particularly in West Grand Bahama, is very proud of is the partnership with businessman Carl Allen of Texas and BTC where they were able to make the West Primary School Wi-Fi accessible and 45 tablets were presented to fifth and sixth grade students.
“This is in keeping with the Ministry of Education and its mandate to ensure that our children are kept abreast of technology, and by extension you know the Minister of State for Grand Bahama (Sen. Kwasi Thompson) has been pushing technology to the limit.
“This is also keeping in line to ensure that we are taking advantage of those advancements in technology and adequately preparing our community and our children for what lies ahead,” she said.
Parker-Edgecombe admitted that the government does have a lot of work left to do but will not be discouraged and in West Grand Bahama and Bimini will continue on its path for ensuring prosperity for its residents.