Information Officer I
Dept. of Information & Public Relations
Telephone: 468- 2740
Twenty persons were registered as British Citizens at a ceremony at Government House on Thursday, November 1.
The new citizens accepted their certificates, and recited the Oath of Allegiance to Her Majesty the Queen and the Pledge of Loyalty to the United Kingdom (UK).
His Excellency the Governor Augustus J.U. Jaspert, in his address to the newly registered British Citizens said, “This is a formal promise as you embrace your new nationality and consider the opportunities it offers by reaching and obtaining British citizenship.”
The Governor said, “It is nonetheless an important decision you are taking to seek British citizenship by registration and it is proper that the fulfillment should be marked in a formal way.”
The Governor said this opens up opportunities for study or professional development and urged the new citizens to grasp them fully with both hands.
“He added, “The new freedoms you will now enjoy also come with new responsibilities, more responsibilities rather than legal ones to uphold our shared values, courtesy and respect and concern for others less fortunate than ourselves. As the good book reminds us, you shall love the stranger for you were once strangers in the land.”
Governor Jaspert added, “I hope as you exercise your new freedoms for travel, employment, you will never forget that you will be ambassadors for your home base, the British Virgin Islands. All of you have put down roots while your contribution to the development of the community, as I'm sure, has already been substantial and where as we collectively seek to seize the opportunities of a global economy, that contribution will be increasingly valuable.”
The ceremony was chaired by the Registrar General, Mrs. Stephanie Benn. Mrs. Benn gave congratulatory remarks and advised the recipients to take special care of their certificates. She also encouraged the recipients to stay up-to-date as there may be legislative changes to British Citizens privileges over time.
The ceremony also featured musical renditions from the male trio “Three G’s”. The group is comprised of former members of the HLavity Stoutt Community College Stingrays band.
British citizenship was extended to all British Overseas Territories (BOT) citizens as a result of the British Overseas Territories Act of 2002. Persons naturalised as BOT citizens following the enactment of the Act on May 21, 2002, do not automatically become British citizens but are eligible to register as British citizens.
The extension of British citizenship to British Overseas Territories citizens was part of the UK Government’s 1999 White Paper entitled Partnership for Progress and Prosperity, which outlined the UK’s policy in respect of the Overseas Territories.
- His Excellency the Governor Augustus Jaspert and Registrar General Mrs. Stephanie Benn are pictured here with the 20 recipients of British Citizenship. Platform personnel and officials from the Civil Registry and Passport Office are also seen. (Photo credit: Ronnielle Frazer/GIS)
- His Excellency the Governor Augustus Jaspert presenting a certificate to a British Citizen Receipent. (Photo credit: Ronnielle Frazer)
- British Citizens reciting the Oath of Allegiance to Her Majesty the Queen and the Pledge of Loyalty to the United Kingdom (UK).
The twenty persons registered as British citizens on, Thursday, November 1 are:
- Laurgia Cherabelle Mabika-Benjamin
- Sekani Tevis Claxaton
- Henrietta Marina George
- Xa’v Mitchell Dominique Gordon
- Judy Lillia Jeremiah
- Feroza Katrick
- John Michael Klein
- Sophia Ann Marie Lewis
- Shaniece Tamara Morgan
- Shonell Shanique Kimonique Peters
- Sharlence Shanel Pond
- Rebecca Joy Elizabeth Rathanum
- Ranney Anderson Richard
- Erisann Esther Tracey Richards
- Rushedo Aneive Robinson
- Javier Dauwit Smith
- Rayan Ricardo Smith
- Yvonne Thomas
- Miranda Ophella Williamson
- Loreta Lindor De Samuel