Plans to convert the Fifth District into a city were unveiled by Virgin Islands Party (VIP) candidate for the Fifth District, Zoe Walcott-McMillan during her launch on 17 May in areas of the District.
The Candidate pledged her support for Virgin Islands Party Chairman, Hon. Julian Fraser. In singing Mr. Fraser’s praise, Walcott-McMillan said: “This party is being led by a great man; the godlike status that is promoted using fear tactics should be replaced to use terms such as bold, fair, transparent and grounded with a diverse yet dynamic team. Hon. Julian Fraser, we salute you. Our pocketbooks salute you, remember your phone bills before telecommunications liberalization?”
The VIP Candidate also addressed what has been said about her since the start of this elections season. She said that she continues to hear the term ‘beauty queen’ in reference to her candidacy: “Throughout this campaign the term ‘beauty queen’ continues to be used, some even say ‘she think this is a pageant.’ Well my good people let me state that I am well aware that this is not a pageant. Was I a beauty queen — the answer is yes! The roles that I played in that respective post played an integral part in ensuring that these beloved Virgin Islands were not only highlighted, but promoted, regionally and internationally. I continue the task by being your ambassador for the Fifth District and the Virgin Islands,” she said.
Walcott-McMillan emphasized that there are some problems which are common, and germane to the District. She listed those as the current water shortage that exists regularly in areas of the Fifth District: “A VIP government will alleviate your water woes. It should be noted that my job as your next Fifth District representative is to minimize the to-do-list.”
The dynamic candidate announced that within 60 days of taking office, she will implement a bus service that will run throughout the district until the national public transportation matter is addressed. “Our seniors will feel a sense of access, while the young people will feel a sense of independence,” she said in relations to the proposed bus service.
One of Walcott-McMillan’ plans for the District includes a mega civic center with multi-level parking to facilitate major events that take place at the multi-purpose complex, cultural center, and the A. O Shirley Recreation grounds. She also listed the revitalising of the Sir Rupert Briercliffe Hall and continued examination of the Territory’s road networks as important District projects.
“In building this District, we are going to have to look at the bigger picture; building the people and consequently the community takes center stage…We are going to pass the anti-bullying legislation to protect the core of our people and the Virgin Islands culture…
We need to build back that moment where the village is raising the child, but too many of our seniors are still working during retirement to pay hefty mortgages. A Virgin Islands Party is prepared to start the housing program,” she stated.
The Fifth District candidate told the gathering that an integral part of the social plan for the District will be the planned quarterly socials that will be held throughout the District to build back community spirit and community togetherness.
The vibrant VIP candidate referenced cities such as Penang, in Malaysia, Sante Fe, Lyon, Osaka and Cape Town and how those places used gastronomy and culinary tourism to foster their economic prosperity.
Similarly, she said, that the Fifth District can become the culinary tourism hub for the BVI, by offering cultural events, marketing the museums in the District, and other cultural sites, and promoting cultural dishes such as tuloma duppling, guinny corn porridge etc.
“Our Lower Estate museum is already housed in a landmark building. All it needs is adequate branding, historical performances and continuous marketing to become a must see…The idea of transforming the Fifth District into the city that it should be is a simple one, it mainly calls for a change in mind set, perspective and inclusion which means respect for the diversity of our community. Most of all, the transformation requires an all hands on deck approach, because most of what is required, we already have. what we lacked was the vision, and implementation: that is what i will bring to the table,” she stated.