BVI News

Immigration Minister to get power to permit anyone into territory at his discretion

The building that houses the Immigration Department in Road Town.

An amendment has been made to the territory’s immigration laws that now gives the minister responsible for the subject the discretionary power to personally permit any person into the territory.

This was revealed in Cabinet’s report of its April 24 meeting chaired by Deputy Governor David Archer, Jr.

The post-meeting statement said Cabinet “approved the amendment of the Immigration and Passport Act (CAP. 130) Section 24 by adding a new section 24(a), which would enable the Minister, in his discretion, to grant any person permission to land and remain in the territory for such period, as he may determine.”

The report further said Cabinet made the decision to ‘ensure and maintain the National Security of the territory of the Virgin Islands’.

The amendment also gives the Immigration minister the ability to allow influential persons who would have previously been forbidden to enter the territory.

According to Cabinet, this will now apply “where a person does not qualify to land and remain in the territory under Section 23(1)(g) in cases such as, but not limited to, religious leaders, entertainers, activists, national heroes, sports personalities, motivational speakers and persons who would boost the territory’s tourism product and can add to the substance of the Virgin Islands in the areas of religion, education, sports, culture and tourism.”

The amendment will be drafted by the Attorney General following instructions from the Premier’s Office.

Ninth District Representative Vincent Wheatley is the minister currently responsible for Immigration.

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34 Comments

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  1. duck1951 says:

    Granting one individual by himself to have this authority according to the laws which if I interpret correctly can lead to a much favoritism . I’d rather this be done by a small group .

    Like 67
    Dislike 5
    • Aye says:

      I second the motion

      Like 26
      Dislike 1
      • One term for all of them says:

        Andrew just remember when you fight hard for something, you also need to fight hard to keep it. I have yet to see or hear of one sensible strategy to move this country forward. We didn’t vote for the power trip you are on. Just sad, as i saw hope in you.

        Like 18
        Dislike 2
    • Slackness says:

      They want to do what they want and for who they want. And it’s sad to see how they treat people who live here for over 20 years

      Like 15
  2. Andabove says:

    Now you are opening your doors to Bribery

    Like 41
    Dislike 2
    • Rubber Duck says:

      The religious con men who are banned in forward thinking countries are to be welcomed with open arms?

      Meanwhile there isn’t a decent plumber in the country

      Crazy country.

      Like 7
      Dislike 1
  3. Tallgirl says:

    Really!!!! Is this really necessary? We do not learn from past mistakes and are doomed to keep repeating it, like a dog chasing his own tail. Why amend any law to grant an individual such rights and when the Government change you will be on the opposition complaining when it is enforce.

    Like 23
    Dislike 1
  4. vip heckler says:

    WOW!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. well sah says:

    Welcome back DA alphonso…..Glad to see you!

    Like 16
    Dislike 3
    • Nope says:

      “where a person does not qualify to land and remain in the territory under Section 23(1)(g) in cases such as, but not limited to, religious leaders, entertainers, activists, national heroes, sports personalities, motivational speakers and persons who would boost the territory’s tourism product and can add to the substance of the Virgin Islands in the areas of religion, education, sports, culture and tourism”

  6. Not wise says:

    That is wayy to much power and say for one individual. Democracy.

    Like 25
    Dislike 1
  7. Well says:

    they have succceeded. They now have access to the top brass and are influencing legislation. Knew it was coming. Not surprised at all.

    In a few, there will more of them that all the so called people of the Eastern Caribbean and BVIslanders (us) combined.

    What a cunning mind, and our people and leaders are yet to figure that out, and not fall prey to and become corruptible because of it.

    With each new administration that goes in, from 1960 to present, it has been observed, we lose a piece of our heritage, way of life and control of our future.

    Indeed, the monster from across the horizon has arrived.

    We need awoken leaders who are cognozant and will work to avert the extinction of our very existence. Instead, we seem to electing people who are continually selling us away for a few dollars.

    With new legisation our fate as BVIslanders are now sealed for the worst. We now slowly to lose what little we have left.

    In forty to fifty years, BVIslanders will not be the ruling class of these islands.

    Like 9
    Dislike 2
  8. What Time Is It? says:

    Empires rise and Fall…and there’s a reason why. Sooner or later, humility flies out the window and One-man Rule kicks in.
    While hurricane Irma knocked us down, our Down Time it also allowed us the opportunity to clean up the mess. Instead, Fahie is all over the place preaching Caribbean Unity and open borders.

    So many things to be prioritized and straightens out here Pi…ing around on things that have no immediate Impact

  9. ⭐️⭐️? says:

    Da coming back ❄️

  10. Curious says:

    If I am understanding this decision correctly, the law will be changed to allow persons who the current Immigration Ordinance deems inadmissible to enter the country at the minister’s discretion under the guise of ensuring and maintaining National Security. My confusion is this, aren’t those the same persons that the current national security apparatus is intended to keep out (undesirables)? How can it be in the interest of National Security to allow undesirables (persons with possible criminal record) to land and remain at one persons discretion. Forward, Forward.

    Like 15
  11. TJ says:

    Venezuela you will be

  12. THE TRUTH says:

    I might be wrong but I suspect that this might have something to do with ensuring that the BUJU BANTON concert comes off. Do not underestimate the importance of this event to our region. I hope the BVI understands the the tourism flood that is about to take place and prepare adequately for it.
    We in BVI have been blessed with so much potential it is so hurtful to see it going down the drain because of our intellectual shortcomings.

    Like 5
    Dislike 3
  13. Citizen says:

    The minister has no right to such authority. Let the Immigration Officers do their job. Nowhere else such happens. That will lead to a very bad presidency in this territory. Pay the officers good salaries and do not interfere. Remember they are the first line of defense for the territory.

  14. Huh says:

    so ayo doing this for buju or DA ? The criminals getting the red carpet or what ?

    Like 4
    Dislike 1
  15. Begging says:

    Begging the Govt to rethink this preposterous move! This guy’s head is going to swell beyond belief… he is fooling half of you but by the time you catch on it will be wayyy late in the game and too much damage done. This baldhead will make the last one from old gov look tame
    Do not unleash this upon the people

  16. hmm says:

    Well Premier i listened to your campaign speech which spoke about letting the departments do their jobs without any political interference and now this. I see a change coming soon its not even 3 months good and a whole heap a crap already.

  17. ReX FeRaL says:

    The building that houses the Immigration Department in Road Town.
    An amendment has been made to the territory’s immigration laws that now gives the minister responsible for the subject the discretionary power to personally permit any person into the territory.

    This was revealed in Cabinet’s report of its April 24 meeting chaired by Deputy Governor David Archer, Jr.

    The post-meeting statement said Cabinet “approved the amendment of the Immigration and Passport Act (CAP. 130) Section 24 by adding a new section 24(a), which would enable the Minister, in his discretion, to grant any person permission to land and remain in the territory for such period, as he may determine.”

    The report further said Cabinet made the decision to ‘ensure and maintain the National Security of the territory of the Virgin Islands’

    How do you ensure national security of the Virgin Islands to allow known criminails to enter on the decision of a Minister? The Minister should not be allowed to admit persons into the Territory of the Virgin Islands. This is wrong on all fronts. Recall this I’ll thought out amendment. Sad day in this Territory. Who is advising the leader ofor the Virgin Islands. For a couple hours and some money it’s ok to allow rapist, drug convictscreen and other degenerate in this country? Wow.

  18. Heritage Holder says:

    I cannot support people with criminal records being allowed to enter the territory.

  19. VG says:

    God dont sleep plenty need to leave before allowing others with justification to return some where seem unfit because of low key crimes…while others here commit big crimes and stay because of name and money..watch and see

  20. Molly says:

    This is dumb

  21. Concerned says:

    Who did they really change that law for?

  22. Antonio Lewis. says:

    How can anyone in the BVI be ok with this crock of nonsense? Then there will be no need for immigration. Open the flood gates. The novice Minister of the subject will be like a bull in a China store. God send help.

  23. Rotten Cod Fish says:

    This is unwise leadership. How can this be in the interest of ensuring National Security of the Virgin Islands? Puzzling at the least.

  24. Who Knows says:

    Has he ever worked as an immigration officer, or had experience in national security?
    Just asking.

  25. Foy says:

    Fah!e really fooled us , incredible .

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