122 get Belonger
and Residence Certificates
More than 80
percent of the backlog of residence and belonger applications has been cleared.
This was announced by Chief Minister, Dr. the Hon. D. Orlando Smith on 22
November when another batch of certificates was issued. At the ceremony, 30
persons were granted belonger status, while 92 were awarded residence status.
When the Chief Minister announced the New Immigration Policy last year there was
a backlog of more than 300 applications for residence and belonger status.
Smith pointed out that awarding the 122 individuals with their certificates was
a decisive move in clearing the backlog. He told the recipients that Government
is showing its confidence in them by awarding them with certificates. " I ask
you to be good ambassadors for the Territory," the Chief Minister said.
“Last December we promised to clear an outstanding backlog of applications for
residence and belonger status with regards to those who applied before January
2003; have continuously lived in the Territory for over 20 years; and who
qualified after the normal screening process,” the Chief Minister said.
Secretary in the Chief Minister's Office, Mr. Elroy Turnbull told the recipients
that he is positive that they will be able to make positive impacts on the BVI.
He said that the fact that they stayed in the Territory for so many years shows
that they are committed to these Islands.
Immigration Officer, Mr. Malvern Brathwaite, explained to the recipients that
they are to conduct themselves in a manner that is conducive to the development
of the Territory. Mr. Brathwaite further stated that through the application
process the recipients have been bestowed with an honor, and with that honor, he
told them, comes responsibilities. The Acting Chief Immigration Officer reminded
Immigration Ordinance has provision for the revocation of the status. He also
reminded them that they are still required to present their passports to the
immigration officers at the port of entries when they return from overseas.
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