President Savarin takes office with “no malice or ill will”
Charles Savarin has said he is taking up the office of the president of Dominica without malice or ill will towards anyone.
Speaking at his swearing in ceremony on Wednesday he also said he is becoming president “without fear of intimidation” and with respect for all the traditions and laws of Dominica.
The president said this year’s celebration of independence under the theme “One Nation, One Dominica, Celebrating 35,” points to what he describes as a “a biblical truth.”
“A house divided against itself cannot stand,” he stated. “It is a reminder to us that as we journey together on our mission to build a more just and prosperous society that differences in approaches and priorities will be merged from time to time. That we should always seek to resolve such differences through dialogue and compromise. And that the bigger picture is Dominica, the state and the people and not self nor the interest of any one group or organization.”
He noted that the prosperity Dominica seeks as a nation “will be more easily and successfully achieved if we pursue them collectively.”
“Indeed progress in that regard will be rapid with the restoration of civility and decency to public and private discourse…” the president said.
He pointed out that it is healthy to have continuous dialogue on various points of view “but in doing so we must strive against creating the impression at home and abroad that we are a people at war with each other.”
Savarin said all citizens of Dominica has a voice as guaranteed by the Constitution but warned that “the voice given is neither unfettered no unlimited.”
“It is to be exercised in accordance with the limits imposed by the said Constitution and the laws on the land,” he stated.
He noted that in “any true democracy” the voices of the minority “can be an important input in the process of moving the society forward.”
“And in such a manner that all views and opinions can be heard and considered,” he remarked. “In the final analysis however decisions will be arrived at by the majority of those participating in the process.”
The president said while the majority has the responsibility to propose and decide “the minority has the responsibility to analyze.”
“And where they disagree with the majority to put forward alternative proposals,” he said. “They must also see themselves as an alternative or replacement in due course to the government and not as a second or parallel government. This means that the minority at all times must be well informed on the critical issues of the day. It is only if they so inform themselves that they will be able to advance credible alternatives to the issues and so engage and even pursue the majority to reflect their point of view and modify and address their decision with such modification can be shown to be in the interest of the people.”
He said all Dominicans have the opportunity to ‘perfect our democracy’ in an “atmosphere of peace, respect and goodwill to all our citizens and residents alike.”