“I Farley Chavez Augustine, having been elected as an assemblyman for Tobago do solemnly affirm that I will bear true faith and allegiance to Trinidad and Tobago, will uphold the constitution and the law, and will conscientiously and impartially discharge the duties and responsibilities of assemblyman that I am now about to assume.”
It was with those words, Tobago’s oldest political institution- the Tobago House of Assembly(THA), began the swearing-in of its newest administrators. The names, which were called in alphabetical order, saw another Deputy Political Leader in Dr. Faith BYisrael walking the same path to be sworn in under the watchful eyes of the President, Paula Mae-Weekes who administrated over the proceedings. Also in attendance at the ceremony were the Prime Minister, Dr. Keith Rowley, and his wife Sharon, as well as Chief Justice, Ivor Archie and his wife Denise Rodriguez-Archie.
The other 13 assemblymen to be sworn in earlier today in the order of appearance were: Terrence Baynes, Nathisha Charles-Pantin, Wayne Clarke, Sonny Craig, Watson Solomon Duke, Niall George, Zorisha Amena Hackett, Trevor James, Kelvon Morris, Megan Morrison, Ian Pollard, Joel Sampson, and Nigel Taitt.
The 12th inauguration ceremony of the THA took place at the Magdalena Grand Beach and Golf Resort and ended after the President and Chief of the armed forces witnessed the signatures that declared that the Progressive Democratic Patriots assemblymen had taken the oath.
In a speech that did not exceed two to three minutes, President Mae-Weekes advised the newly sworn-in assemblymen, “The work has now started.” She added, “You have a long and arduous road ahead.” However, she admonished them despite the circumstances, “Just get the job done.”
The 12th Tobago House of Assembly inauguration ceremony will now continue at the Assembly Legislature on Jerningham Street, Scarborough where a presiding officer, chief secretary and deputy chief secretary will be elected.
Tomorrow, President Paula Mae-Weekes will swear in secretaries who will then be assigned to their respective portfolios.
In speaking to reporters outside the Assembly Legislature the soon to become Chief Secretary has already indicated that there would be a realignment of various divisions.