Political aspirant Mitsy Ellis-Simpson wants the British Virgin Islands to adopt national heroes.
She said naming and celebrating great individuals who contributed to national development will give guidance and shape the behaviour of residents.
“It is time that we unite this country, select national heroes and declare a National Heroes Day. I would like for the Virgin Islands to set a unified and social precedent for everyone who calls the Virgin Islands their home which will promote collective consciousness and encourage the preservation of Virgin Islands history,” Ellis-Simpson said.
She also suggested that a plot of land in a central area be selected and used as a National Heroes Square.
“This exercise will require every district, all nine, to form a committee to identify persons with certain attributes and characteristics whom they believe should be declared a National Hero through clear guidelines. This matter should be the people’s decision presented to the government of the day as to who we should celebrate.”
Qualities of a national hero
She said individuals classified as national heroes must be deceased persons who lived here, performed courageous and noble acts, and who provided outstanding and exceptional service that brought honour to the Virgin Islands.
While driving home her point, she said persons who may be venerable enough to consider are the BVI’s first chief minister, H Lavity Stoutt, activist Noel Lloyd, Theodolph Faulkner who she said “shares credit for the start of our first constitution”, and Dr Willard Wheatley.
“I’m not at liberty to say who should be declared a National Hero but … every nation you can imagine, including the Virgin Islands, has its history documenting its struggles and triumphs but the history is incomplete if we do not document the great men and women who contributed to its national development,” Ellis-Simpson said.
She continued: “I’m a firm believer in pursuing the things that matter like investing in our children and young people, fixing our infrastructure, taking good care of our seniors, building stronger industries and so forth. However, nation-building should be at the heart of any economic and community development plan for the country. We truly deserve National Heroes, a National Heroes Day and a National Heroes Square in the Virgin Islands.”
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