#Freetown, GB, October 3, 2018 – Bahamas – Member of Parliament for East Grand Bahama, the Hon. K. Peter Turnquest on Monday, October 1, encouraged young people from the area to become the best and brightest the country has ever seen during a church service in recognition of National Youth Month. The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance acknowledged them as National Youth Month officially started on Monday, and is being celebrated all over The Bahamas under the theme, ‘Youth: Forefront of Change.’
Describing the young people present as “diamonds in the rough” the Deputy Prime Minister added that they all have special talents waiting to be discovered. As young focused people, he said, they are the future and added that when hearing it as a young person, he thought the saying was not only scary and powerful, but carried great responsibility.
“The strange part is, there were other people also being told that they were the future. Now many years later, here I am, serving as the Deputy Prime Minister of The commonwealth of The Bahamas, while some of those same people, who were given the same message as me, have lost their lives to gun violence, or are behind bars as a result of it. You see, the problem was that they told us that we were the future, but they didn’t complete the sentence. I believe that life and death are in the power of the tongue, but what we say can be just as powerful as what we fail to say.
“They told us that we were the future, so some of us came up to be the leaders that we are today, and then there were those who grew up to commit murders, sell drugs, plague our streets with crime and vicious acts of violence. So just as the future looks bright today, it also had a dark side and many do not take heed of the warnings, leading to destruction and a hard life. We tell the young people that they are the future, but we don’t tell them what to make of it.”
The Member of Parliament encouraged the young people by stating that they are the ones to set the highest grade average ever in the country, be the future law enforcement officers, live at peace with their neighbors, family and children, do well at whatever they do, and they will not steal, kill or take advantage of the vulnerable.
This is a very important stage in their lives, Minister Turnquest said, as they can still think freely and decide on their future. “This is the time you are allowed to be creative and spontaneous; make mistakes, erase them, and start over again.”
He added, “The point is, you must all seek to discover what it is within you that will someday add meaning to your lives.”
Referring to the donation of over $8,000 in musical instruments for the schools in East Grand Bahama, the Member of Parliament added that he hoped this would open doors for those interested in music.
“In the months to come, I will also donate computers to each of the schools, to ensure our children have every opportunity to do well in school and remain focused on positive values and skills development.
“I’m looking forward to seeing greatness come out of East Grand Bahama. You may not know it now, but within this gathering may be another legend, whose musical works will be revered all across The Bahamas. There might be a new leader for one of the greatest Junkanoo groups sitting in this assembly today. While others may choose to take on the important role to be music teachers, passing on your knowledge to the next generation.
“Some of you will become technicians and professionals in other fields, the next computer genius or scientist. Looking into many of your faces from where I stand, I see excitement and anticipation, which is something that I hope never dies as you go through school, and seek to discover your place in the grand scheme of life.”
Photo Caption: Member of Parliament for East Grand Bahama, the Hon. K. Peter Turnquest, who is also Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, on Monday, October 1, donated some $8,000 worth of musical instruments to the Eastern schools which include: Sweeting’s Cay Primary School, East End Preschool, East End Primary School and East End Junior High School. Shown with some of the students are Deputy Prime Minister Turnquest; Rosie Lewis, principal of East End Primary School; and Kadreah Wildgoose, music teacher for the East End schools.
(BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)