Minister for Natural Resources & Labour Vincent Wheatley is the new Deputy Premier of the British Virgin Islands.
He takes over from Minister of Works, Transportation & Utilities, Kye Rymer whose three-month stint ended Thursday, September 5.
Wheatley who will be in that position until December 5 is the third government minister to take on that position since March.
The fourth Deputy Premier under the Fahie administration will be Health & Social Development Minister Carvin Malone. Following Malone’s stint, a permanent Deputy Premier will be chosen.
Speaking at the brief swearing-in ceremony, Wheatley said: “I am indeed humbled to be here this morning taking the oath of office for one of the highest public offices in the land.”
“Premier, you can rest assured that over the next three months, I will be making the most of this learning opportunity,” the first-term legislator added.
Rymer, who also delivered remarks, congratulated Wheatley and wished him well.
He also described his experience in the Deputy Premier’s seat as ‘great’.
“The experience that I gained during this short time I will always remember,” he said.
He continued: “I got the opportunity to serve as the Acting Premier on quite a few occasions, and I understood the responsibilities, and I used it to put the people first.”
Benefit in times of crisis
Premier Andrew Fahie said the ‘unconventional move’ of giving his portfolio ministers a chance at the Deputy Premier seat is to ensure each link in his government’s chain is strong.
He also said he believes the rotation will benefit the territory in times of crisis.
“We have often heard of premiers coming off the scene. And if, God forbid, something happens; for people to say ‘well, who’s gonna run this country?’, we would have [already] gone through two deputy premiers who I have full confidence in [and who] can run the country, come what may. [We also have] a third one here and the fourth.”
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