Mr. Speaker, it is indeed an honour as I rise to make my contribution to the Sectoral Debate, which will be my first presentation in this Honourable House. Firstly, let me express my gratitude to the Most Honourable Prime Minister for displaying sufficient confidence in me by assigning me this important portfolio as State Minister of Tourism and Entertainment.
I also wish to acknowledge my family: my hero of a mother Mrs. Lena Braham-Crawford, my sisters, my uncle Ransford Braham and the other members of my family who have been very supportive of my move to enter representational politics and serve my country in this capacity. Their support is as certain as night follows day and for that I am grateful.
Further, Mr. Speaker, I wish to express my appreciation to my lead Minister, Dr. Wykeham McNeill, who has taken the time to tutor me and to facilitate my, at times, exuberance, with a calm, reasoned fostering that has left me comfortable to think and act freely. I am also grateful to our Permanent Secretary Mrs. Jennifer Griffith, and Director General Ms. Carrole Guntley, for their support over the last few months.
Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the Chairman of the newly appointed Entertainment Advisory Board, Kingsley Cooper, CEO of Pulse Investments and the ever willing board members many of whom are present today.
I also want to thank the many partners within the entertainment industry for their remarkable support over the last few months as we conducted broad-scale consultation on the way forward.
Mr. Speaker, following the General Election on the 29th of December I received a gift that has facilitated rubbing shoulders with princes, interacting with queens and more importantly, placed me in a position to influence the direction of a nation. At this time Mr. Speaker it is fittingly appropriate that I express special thanks to my constituents in East Rural St. Andrew, including my Councillors and management team. Mr. Speaker I have been given this opportunity through the will of God and the help of man and I will serve both to the best of my ability.
I would also like to acknowledge two former Parliamentarians and Government Ministers who currently reside in my constituency, Burchell Whiteman and Dean Peart, for their support thus far. In addition Mr. Speaker, I would like to recognize two of my predecessors who represented the constituency in the past and laid the political foundation for the success I’ve inherited; Mr. Emerson "Ginnard" Barrett and Councillor for the Harbour View Division former MP, Mr. Oliver Clue, for their guidance and support.
Finally for my salutations Mr. Speaker, I recognize members of my campaign team present, as well as the Tuesday night support team that has contributed freely of their time and knowledge to the improvement of the lives of the people of East Rural St. Andrew.