Governor-General the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen ended his Jamaica 50 Parish Tours with a visit to the parish of Kingston on October 30, marking the celebration by the City of its 140th anniversary as the Capital of Jamaica.
His first stop was the Windward Road Primary and Junior High School where he was warmly greeted by the principal, staff, students and members of the Parent Teachers Association. Sir Patrick expressed his pleasure at the discipline and talent which were so evident there and commended students and staff for their excellent performance. He encouraged the students to continue to absorb as much as possible, reminding them of the ditty: “a good education will never decay.” He declared himself to have been “bowled over” by the positive impression left by the school. Later, the Governor-General viewed the many trophies won by the school, including for the Junior School’s Challenge Quiz, which they won on several occasions.
The tour of Kingston continued to the Caribbean Maritime Institute School of Advanced Skills (CMI), Fort Charles, the Caribbean Military Maritime Training Centre and the Coast Guard in Port Royal. The Governor-General also met briefly with residents of Port Royal. Later, during a working lunch with business and community leaders organized by the Gleaner Company, the focus was on the imperatives for the restoration of Kingston, commitment to the restoration and the real need for the enhancement of the city’s image.
Speaking to faculty and students at the Caribbean Maritime Institute, Sir Patrick Allen highlighted Jamaica’s proximity to the Panama Canal whose expansion should be completed by 2015. This, he said, held significant economic implications for Jamaica, including the creation of job opportunities for graduates of the Institute. Dr. Fitz Pinnock, Principal of the CMI, demonstrated the institution’s achievements in areas such as renewable energy and metal fabrication. The Governor-General recalled that in June the CMI had designed and constructed four Beacons which were lit across the island in celebration of the Diamond Jubilee of Her Majesty The Queen. The CMI is a regionally recognized centre of excellence.
At the CMMTC, Sir Patrick had another occasion to celebrate excellence in Kingston as he toured the cutting-edge institution and was introduced to the world class navigation simulation room established with the cooperation of Canada.
A productive meeting with Justices of the Peace for the parish, chaired by Custos Steadman Fuller, was the high note on which the tour ended. Sir Patrick challenged the JPs to be part of the change which would bring Jamaica to the achievement of our Vision 2030 objectives.