(NassuaGuardian)In her inaugural address as governor general, Cynthia “Mother” Pratt today made clarion call for Bahamians to help those in need in an effort to improve the country.
During a ceremony at Government House this morning, Pratt was sworn in as the 12th governor-general of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.
Pratt, 77, who previously served as the first female deputy prime minister, pledged to give her best in service to all Bahamians and to serve in honor and love.
“As a mother my eyes and ears are always open to the needs of our young people and the importance of doing all we can to uplift them so that as they grow into adulthood and inherit full responsibility for the continued development of our nation,” Pratt said.
“However, we must acknowledge that our encouragement and support is essential to enable them to continue to establish efforts which allow them to inherit and manage a land where love and peace abound and where they can live in certain hope.
“It is essential, I believe to do all we can to support those young people who are special due to situations beyond their control. They also need our help and encouragement as they develop. That is our solemn duty to assist them to rise above the trials they suffer and eventually become citizens making positive contributions to our system and our development.”
Pratt also made a special appeal for the provision of assistance to older Bahamians in need.
“I urge all who can, stand ready to help wherever the need arises,” she said. “I urge you to support the weak and lift up the fallen.”
She said this will enable them to live with respect and be a fruitful part of the community.
“ I therefore invite all to look around and to see where help is needed,” Pratt continued. Respond to those needs in whatever ways we can. I am convinced that we shall continue to accomplish great things if we work together to ensure a better quality of life for all people.”
Prime Minister Philip Davis described Mother Pratt as an unparalleled nation builder with a heart for the people.
“While we often speak of her nurturing nature as the “mother” of a Nation, I also wish to emphasize her strength. You see, she isn’t just a comforter, she is also a defender of those who cannot defend themselves. And there can be no mistaking her kindness for weakness. Cynthia “Mother” Pratt is a force of nature with a passion for people.
Her own story is a testament to her resilience, but even as she relied on that strength to move forward and to overcome hardship, she also shared it, to uplift the people around her. There are countless stories of young women whose only pathway to a college came through Cynthia “Mother” Pratt. Take a walk through the Grove and you will meet young men who will tell you that it was “Mother Pratt” who helped them to get a job, turn their life around, and break a cycle of poverty and imprisonment.
Davis said he has also benefitted from Pratt’s encouragement and support.