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Over 20 locals officially sworn in as youth parliamentarians

More than 20 young Virgin Islanders between the ages of 18 and 35 yesterday took Oath of Affirmations as they officially became members of the Virgin Islands Youth Parliament.

The young parliamentarians hail from various communities across the BVI and represent various churches, schools and youth groups, non-governmental organizations as well as the public and private sector.

The Youth Parliament will mirror the House of Assembly with 15 members holding assigned portfolios and others assigned administrative and research functions that are critical to the work of the Youth Parliament.

“It’s important to note that the Virgin Islands Youth Parliament will run for the remaining life of the Fourth House of Assembly. When the House of Assembly is dissolved, this parliament will come to an end then the Fiftth House of Assembly will also continue with new members,” said Julian Willock, Speaker of the House of Assembly.

Before the launch of the Youth Parliament, training workshops were on areas such as public speaking, the constitution, proper dress code, the way the House Of Assembly works, among other areas.

Premier Andrew Fahie who was present at the launch urged the young leaders to be confident and fearless in attacking issues that affect the BVI. He said the revival of the Youth Parliament shows that his government is serious about preparing youth to fill top political positions in the BVI.

“It is no secret that one of my passions as Premier, is that Virgin-islanders must have the highest level of control in charting the course of our country. We must develop and lead the vision for our country.

He continued: How this territory will look in the future will be determined by the hands that are moulding it through its institutions and offices and those hands must be Virgin-islanders. Otherwise the outcome will be something that has no semblance of the essence, heritage or identity of the Virgin-islander,” Premier Fahie explained.

The Youth Parliament is expected to have one sitting per year to discuss a topic chosen by the management committee that handles its affairs.

House Speaker Julian Willock who is also the chairman of the Youth Parliament said they are hoping to host the sitting of the Youth Parliament this year, one the management committee is satisfied that the young leaders are prepared for the debate.

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16 Comments

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  1. lol says:

    I only hope that the youth speaker isn’t acting **+ *** like his mentor

    Like 1
    Dislike 3
  2. Good stuff says:

    Thanks to the previous NDP administration for putting the youth parliament in place. I enjoyed listening to those young people debate. Thanks to the current VIP administration for following up on what was put in place. Good luck to all the young parliamentarians.

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  3. Adan. says:

    Not idea of what is all about
    BUT…congratulations.

  4. Babysitter says:

    18 – 35 years old they are not youth.

    Like 9
    Dislike 5
  5. water and swerage says:

    under willock it will be well organized trust me

    Like 6
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  6. give credit says:

    I swear we have elected a bunch of trump like hating petty people. The Youth parliament was started by the NDP under Myron. Point blank. Give credit where it is due. We too petty in this place.

  7. Disgraceful Politics says:

    You check the cartoon on the yellow site about the Youth Parliament and the Speaker have MW as the Emperor without Clothes.

    Little does he know that we always saw and still see the Speaker as the Emperor without clothes no matter how much cartoon he put he employees to draw.

  8. Release Date: 29 April 2015 says:

    Press Release

    Premier’s Office
    Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth Affairs, Fisheries and Agriculture
    Topics: Youth Affairs
    Release Date: Wednesday, 29 April 2015 – 3:15pm

    The British Virgin Islands is one of seven countries in the region with an updated Youth Policy following the launch of the Virgin Islands National Youth Policy and Strategic Framework on Monday.

    The launch reflects the Government’s determination to give the youth a solid foundation on which they can grow as individuals, and as responsible citizens of the Territory and the world.

    Premier and Minister of Finance, Dr. the Honourable D. Orlando Smith, OBE stated, “I am pleased that in giving our youth a voice, the National Youth Policy includes the creation of the Virgin Islands Youth Commission, the National Youth Council and the National Youth Parliament.”

    The Premier added, “We envision that through these three bodies, the Territory’s next generation of leaders and parliamentarians will be trained on the guiding principles of democracy, good governance, advocacy, human rights and the law.”

    Minister for Education and Culture, Honourable Myron V. Walwyn said that he was looking forward to the institutionalisation of the National Youth Commission, the National Youth Council and Youth Parliament.

    He said, “As early as July, the youth of this Territory will have the opportunity to take ownership of this Youth Policy as we prepare them to be a part of the sitting of the Commonwealth Youth Parliament at the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association’s meeting, which will be held here in the Virgin Islands.”

    The Minister further stated that the Youth Parliament will enable young people across the Territory to develop their skills and to advocate meaningfully on different platforms and themes that impact them.

    Honourable Walwyn said the parliament contributes to a strong and secure Territory by developing young people and by their participation, allowing them to mature as politically accountable and responsible citizens grounded in a civic consciousness, national identity, democracy, and the rule of law and respect for rights and diversity.

    Presentations of the Youth Policy were made to students of the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College, the Elmore Stoutt High School and members of the Rotaract Clubs of Tortola and Virgin Gorda.

    The Virgin Islands National Youth Policy and Strategic Framework is a policy in place to provide strategic vision and direction to ensure better lives, livelihoods and success outcomes for the Territory’s youth.

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  9. jay says:

    Is this just an apprenticeship? Or will they also be putting forth recommendations to the HOA? Asking just to understand how the Youth Parliament benefits the wider community.

  10. QTNA says:

    This is great news but we have a question, how were the young people chosen? Many out here wants an answer

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