October 28, 2020
The Department of Local Government has continued to function despite the stall in elections as a result of the pandemic. During his address to the nation on Monday, 26th October, Minister of Labour, Transport & Local Government, the Hon. Dion Foulkes gave an update on the functioning of the department.
“In March 2020 with the onset of the Emergency Orders, Family Island Administrators within the Department of Local Government formed and led local task forces comprised of all local heads of Government Agencies and other stakeholders,” he said. “Their main purpose was to plot a course through un-chartered waters while maintaining the integrity of healthcare services, the wellbeing of residents, and to ensure the continued delivery of everyday quality services. All efforts were centred on adhering to the required protocols to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 infection.”
The Minister said that while they faced with many challenges, Family Island Administrators were able to bridge the gap between Central Government and Family Island Communities. He said that they ensured that all residents had access to food and water and in many cases, psychological assistance. He said they also eased the way for the submission of special requests to the Competent Authority such as travel and business operations.
As it relates, to Local Government Elections, which are held every three (3) years, he said that they will be carried out once the emergency orders have been lifted.
“These elections were scheduled to be held in the Family Islands on 24th June, this year. However, the elections have been suspended until the cessation of the Emergency Orders and are scheduled to be held within 90 days after the Emergency Order ends.”
By Betty Vedrine