first_imgDominica Independence – celebrating 39 yearsOn Friday, November 3, for it’s 39th year even as the country recovers from the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria, the celebration continues for Dominica independence.Addressing the nation, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit urged citizens not to be daunted by the task of rebuilding the nation.Hurricane Maria hit Dominica on September 18 as a Category 5 storm, killing at least 28 people and leaving billions of dollars in damage.Unlike previous years when nationals were honored for their contribution to the socio-economic development of the island, this year’s national awards ceremony was postponed to next year.Still standingIn his address marking the Dominica independence anniversary,  Skerrit said Dominica ‘is still standing” despite facing the “fiercest floods, the most ferocious winds. “We are sorrow-stricken; we swallow hard, but it still catches in our throat; but we are still standing! Difficulties envelope every aspect of life, uncertainties swirl; and we are still standing! The outside world wondered aloud whether this is the kind of devastation from which you don’t recover. We are still standing.Hope is infinite“We, the children of Dominica, have shown the world that disaster is finite; but, hope is infinite! Maria stole everything money can buy, everything you can put a price on; but left you with that which is priceless! We will determine the value of those things through our actions in coming days and weeks. A moment comes, but rarely in history, when a nation’s soul is revealed.”He told the Dominica Independence Day rally at the Windsor Park Stadium attended by thousands of people that how the island responds to the storm “will define us, will make us; will become us.”Skerrit said he’s confident that people who fled the island after the storm as they did in 1979 when Dominica was hit by Hurricane David, would soon return.“Sometimes it takes a crisis to remind everyone of the importance of our journey. Remember, you only see the stars clearly at the darkest hour. Ladies and Gentlemen, on this our Independence Day, Dominica stands forth on the edge of a great triumph to come, on the edge of a triumph not just for Dominica but for the world.”Outlines re-development plans The prime minister also outlined new plans for the re-development of the island saying there are moves to establish the Climate Resilient Economic Agency of Dominica, (CREAD) to support the rapid implementation of the plans once they are funded.He said following his visit to the United States, London and Brussels over the last few weeks over 50 per cent of the funding needed to rebuild the island had been forthcoming. “We will be presenting our plans to a partners conference in New York later in the month to help raise part of the balance needed. We will support the private sector as it rebuilds and restores.”For recent article on Dominica, click the link: FAO calls for immediate food production in Dominicalast_img

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