Opposition Legislator Julian Fraser has said he believes the sister islands of Anegada, Jost Van Dyke and Virgin Gorda should each have their own District Representative.
He made that comment during a special sitting in the House of Assembly which was organised to pay tribute to the late Ralph T O’Neal.
Fraser who is also the Third District Representative said he backs the idea which is one that was advocated by the late O’Neal during his 40 years of service as a political representative.
Fraser further said he believes this approach will result in each sister island being treated equally and fairly.
“Both Anegada and Jost Van Dyke needs its own representative. Until I hear my leader who is the Premier speaking that language, I’m not following. That’s forward-thinking and it’s progressive.
Those are the kinds of things that we need to move this country forward,” he stated.
Each sister islands have similar needs
Fraser further argued that each of territory’s sister islands requires the same kinds of infrastructure and services that are delivered on the main island of Tortola. He said some of these include police stations, a hospital on Virgin Gorda and Anegada and the need for an airport for the Ninth District.
He said: “In my view, every Virgin Islander is a citizen of the BVI and no one should have an advantage over the other. I would say to you that a pallet of blocks in Anegada should cost the same as a pallet of blocks in Tortola. Until that happens the guy in Anegada is at a disadvantage.”
“If we have a man in this House pounding the table sitting at the table looking for his slice of the pie equally as everyone else from those particular islands Anegada and Jost Van Dyke,” Fraser added.
Constitution supports the move
The Third District Representative further said the options are available within the Constitution to turn the idea into a reality.
He stated: “The Virgin Islands Constitution Order 2007 makes provision for the expansion of the House of Assembly. Some people were arguing for a sixth minister, and the compromise reached in order to get this sixth minister was that you would have to expand the House of Assembly proportionately.”
“There would have to be a proportionate number of members who are not ministers to the ministers (junior ministers), and one of the compromises is that in order to get a sixth minister, you must expand the House by two,” the Senior Legislator added.
Fraser said he was reminding Premier Andrew Fahie of the matter since he had not heard the Premier’s view on the subject since taking office.
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