BVI News

Bold Premier: Fahie promises OECS he will ‘regularise’ C’bean expats

Premier Andrew Fahie (foreground) speaking at a special meeting of the OECS in Guadeloupe last week. (Photo provided)

Premier Andrew Fahie has volunteered himself to be held to account by the regional community.

In what could be described as a bold move, Premier Andrew Fahie promised a delegation of regional leaders that he will grant permanent residency to Caribbean expats who have lived, worked, and raised children in the BVI for several years.

Fahie made that promise to leaders of the member countries of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) last Thursday.

He said most of the expats whose status will be reviewed and ‘regularised’ are from the Eastern Caribbean, “particularly St Vincent and the Grenadines and Dominica”.

“Many of these people – our dear friends and neighbours – have lived and worked in the BVI more than a decade. Many of them have given birth and raised their children there. Yet, they have no official status,” the Premier told the OECS.

“My government believes that it is an economic and moral imperative that we fix this situation and afford residency and more permanent status arrangements for the many families who have been kept in limbo and forced to live a life of uncertainty all these years.”

He continued: “We will regularise for persons, such as the St Lucian restaurant attendant at one of the places I eat from regularly in Road Town, who came to help her aunt in her store as a 16-year-old out of school, nearly 20 years ago. She has three children, all born in the BVI. Up to today, neither she nor her children have any official status.”

Premier Fahie described the current state of affairs whereby these category of expats are not granted permanent residency as culture that ‘cultivates a Caribbean under-class’.

Premier Fahie’s promise to the regional community comes days after making a similar pledge locally. He said a special committee will be established to execute the mandate.

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  1. Fair Play says:

    Just as BVI citizens are able to obtain US resident status in St Thomas and mainland US after satisfying the requirements, it is only fair play for the BVI to grant same for expats who meet those requirements here. Terribly shameful that for all these years many of the relevant authorities have blatantly disregard these very immigration rules/laws and refused these people such status. I recalled a gentleman from Guyana who was refused his resident status by a certain Chief Immigration Officer whose initials were ‘*O’. The gentleman was married to one of our ladies for over ten years and met all of the requirements but *O refused to hand over the certificate because another Guyanese man had ran off with his lady. This nonsense needs to stop. Fair play must be shown to all persons irrespective of their place of origin.

    Like 39
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    • strupes says:

      But a bvislander cant stay in the USVI for twenty years without a visa…………..Ayo have a privilege to live in the BVI………..Nobody ain’t chasing ayo, so i don’t see why ayo want belongers

      Like 10
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      • Native BVIslander says:

        I am skeptical about this. We are already a minority..We need to take this into account. We are unique in this regard. Unlike any Easton Caribbean island. Just remember this Premier.i am not anti immigration..I am just a nationalist

        Like 4
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        • Wa nationalist says:

          you probably born in America and come here because your parents from here so wa nationalist. go sleep.

          Like 16
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        • Smith says:

          The man said if you all fit the requirements not just any Johnny come lately..if Mr fair is doing the wrong thing then people of the bvi stop going away to have your kids

          Like 10
  2. Well meh boy says:

    Good job Hon. Premier. This needed to be done. However if a new NDP government had done this people would have been having cows all now. The bloggers would have gone crazy saying they giving away the country. Every talk show host would have been on the radio bashing that they giving away the country. We seem more focused on who does something rather than whether it is good or bad for the country. Good going Hon. Fahie.

    Like 36
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  3. sam the man says:

    Well done Mr Fahie a bold move indeed! and a great step towards true valuing of all citizens who deserve such treatment…

    Like 24
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  4. son of the soil says:

    Is this a threat to national security? That law where an outsider can only remain the the country for 7 years need to be implemented real soon or else we will be outnumbered here in our own country. We need a stop to this madness fast

    Like 8
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    • Hey says:

      You are outnumbered already

      Like 24
      Dislike 1
    • valhalla says:

      I want to know who you are so badly.

    • Expat Caribbean Doctor says:

      Hmmm. Are you sure about this is what you want son of the soil?
      Do you want to keep changing your docs,nurses, teachers,construction workers, helpers,lawyers every 7 years? Remember now, there is a great demand for good teachers, healthcare workers etc worldwide so the people you send back home may not opt to come back.
      Do you have enough trained locals who would be willing and able to fill these positions?

      Like 12
  5. vip heckler says:

    Everyone else have either a note pad or laptop in front of them…Look at Andrew…..Well sah!

    Like 7
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  6. Referendum says:

    Was a referendum by the BVI electorates held on this matter? Dictatorship behaviour? There is a right way to handle sensitive matters. That is why the UK can impose certain matters on the people. Your own doing it to you just as in the slave trade days when the Africans sold out the other Africans for beer and trinklets

    Like 6
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  7. Rayn says:

    This is a nice gesture.I think this should apply to all expats ,not only Caribbeans who meet the requirements.

    Like 20
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    • ??? says:

      Yes, what’s up with that? It is just great and should have been long ago. It is not only Caribbean people that has been here for years and years contributing to the BVI’s. If that is true and I have read the statement several times, reeks of discrimination.

  8. No nonsense says:

    @ heckler, you wanted a trip to takes notes. Are you one of the free miles flyer now sitting on the dead beach at Brandywine. Sorry no more free air miles

    Like 2
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  9. VG Resident says:

    I am so sick of the double standard of my Virgin Islands leaders and people. Our Premier is promising status to expatriates and Mr. Myron Walwyn who was born here of expatriate parents is being classed as an island man and not considered fit to own his rights in this country. Shame on you Mr. Premier.

    Like 29
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  10. Philbert says:

    Good vibe

  11. son of the soil says:

    It look like we need a bi-election for the premier seat also because this man looking to give away this country

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    • @son if the soul says:

      Ok then. I’m confused because I thought they said Myron was giving away the country to expats. That’s why Mr. semester could be up and down saying even though he hasn’t met eligibility status he will get belonger because as he quoted “Andrew / VIP in office.” Keep an eye out…think NDP was bad

      Like 8
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  12. BVIslander says:

    Sorry guys….There are just some things that Andrew can say and get away with that Myron cannot say and get away with….SIMPLE…. that’s the difference with being born from BVI Parents….

    Like 20
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  13. critic says:

    I wonder if those other leaders could understand the bad grammar?

    Like 7
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  14. Soil of the sun says:

    You is one how have bad mine for Caribbean people and it is so

    Like 4
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  15. Old says:

    You talking about bad grammar you don’t now a thing about bad grammar.,

    Like 1
    Dislike 4
  16. Who? says:

    It is clear we have not treated some people from the rest of the Caribbean as well as we should have and we certainly don’t have enough trade within the Caribbean.

    However, there are a good few people here who are not from the Caribbean who have stood shoulder to shoulder with Caribbean and BVI people throughout thick and thin. Who work incredibly hard to keep the main pillars of the economy going, to keep customers against mounting pressures and often at great turmoil to their family life. It is important for the BVI they are not slighted or left behind.

  17. Indigenous Virgin Islander says:

    We need to protect the land of our ancestors. ANDREW! stop selling out the country to keep voting cattle for the VIP.

    Like 6
    Dislike 1
  18. I never knew says:

    This is a sad place. I never knew it was this bad

  19. Frog Man says:

    Nonsense Andrew Fahie

    Like 3
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  20. Ghost says:

    Does the Premier knows what it is to “Regularize” someone’s immigration stutus? Think…. it’s not illegal yet sir.

    Like 2
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  21. Anonymous says:

    I’m living in the bvi for 30 yrs and don’t have no status

    Like 4
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  22. Please says:

    Andrew the BVI is not yours to give away we voted against NDP not for VIP remember that. Get the countries finances stabilize and then deal with other issues.

    Like 6
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  23. Hard Working Expay says:

    Bad mind and selfishness is going to lead to the downfall of some of you in this country.
    All the premier said was that he was going to regularize the status of those who have been living and working here for years and all of a sudden he is selling out the country and all the other nonsense. It shows just how xenophobic and ignorant some of you are.
    I am happy we have a leader who has sense – who is aware that when you make people more comfortable and secure then they will do more to benefit the country. Some of you still can’t get pass the days when it would be hard to find a spouse that is not related to you. Things and times have changed. The whole world is becoming one big global village and if we continue to cultivate this small a mindedness mentality, we are going to be left eating the dust of progressive countries.
    Thank God for a bold outward thinking Premier.

    Like 4
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    • PROBLEMS says:

      I have no problem with his plan to regularize the status of expats if they have not broken any laws. But at the same time I want to see the borders better policed to prevent illegals entering the territory. Anyone caught helping them to illegally enter and they themselves were not born here should lose their right to remain here and should be deported just like the illegals.
      Anyone entering into contact with the police or goverment office need to produce proper documents that need to be properly scrutinized and if illegal they should be deported.

  24. I was an expatriate says:

    I was not born in the BVI but I made the BVI my home many years ago. I have had status here for over 6 years now. Many people I know have status too so I dont feel like expats are left behind or disenfranchised. I waited my time, applied and was granted status. I never expected to get it 10 years after I came here. People who always running to politicians need to stop and be patient.

    I still live in the BVI but quite a few get status and soon after leave the BVI for bigger pastures and never come back.

    BVIlanders cant go to another Caribbean country and get status easy so we expats should not expect to get it here quick either. Stop complaining, live right and enjoy life.

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