Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 08, 2016 (SKNIS):  As per tradition, Ministers of Government and other Government officials commenced visits to schools on Wednesday, September 07, as part of the 33rd Independence Celebrations.

Deane Glasford, Beach Allen, Tucker Clarke, Irish Town and Dr. William Connor Primary Schools were among schools visited in the Basseterre area. The team also visited the Cotton Thomas Comprehensive School.

The Honourable Vincent Byron, Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Legal Affairs and Communications, reminded the students that just as their birthdays are important so too is the Independence of the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis.

“Independence Day in the country of our birth, in this nation of ours is very special. All of us have birthdays and our birthday is a very special day. It is a time when we celebrate it and our family and friends celebrate with us,” said Minister Byron. “Our country has its celebration of our birthday on the 19th of September and we all must feel good about that.”

The Attorney General explained to the students that Independence signals an important venture in our history, as it gave the country control of its own affairs. He educated them, noting that prior to 1983, St. Kitts and Nevis did not run its own affairs, as it was done so by persons in England.

Minister of Public Infrastructure, Post, Urban Development and Transport, the Honourable Ian Patches Liburd, reflected on this year’s theme “Promoting Prosperity through Sustainability and National Unity” and told the students that one way to do so is to first develop a positive attitude in school.

“Your attitude will determine your altitude. It will determine how far and where you go,” said Minister Liburd, while encouraging the students to use their time in school wisely. “It is your time, the only opportunity you will get to have a primary education, so you have to make the best use of it. So good luck and God bless you from here on during your education journey.”

Vincent Hodge, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, also gave brief remarks to the staff and students of the various learning institutions.

“We are getting ready to celebrate our Independence when we remember the time we took  charge of our own affairs [and] when we took charge of managing the business of social services, education and finances for ourselves because we have the persons in our country who have the capabilities to do such,” said Mr. Hodge. “As we celebrate our Independence, we want to look back at how joyous the occasion was.”

Every year, government officials take to the schools as a way of celebrating Independence with the students and sharing personal thoughts.

St. Kitts and Nevis gained Independence 33 years ago on September 19, 1983.