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A second set of twenty-six new British Overseas Territories Citizens (BOTC) received Certificates of Naturalisation at a ceremony held on November 6.
The new citizens recited the Oath of Allegiance and the Pledge of Loyalty during a ceremony officiated by Registrar General Mrs. Stephanie Benn at Government House.
His Excellency the Governor Augustus J. U. Jaspert said it was his “great pleasure” to participate in the ceremony.
“You are a group of people who I am delighted to count as fellow citizens,” he said, adding, “All of you have already demonstrated your commitment to the Territory. I would urge you all not to lose sight of that commitment not only to your families but to the entire Territory and wider community.”
Governor Jaspert reminded those present that this new status entitles them to carry a Virgin Islands Passport and to apply for British Passports.
Premier and Minister of Finance Honourable Andrew A. Fahie was unable to attend the ceremony but sent his regards to the new citizens via Deputy Premier and Minister of Education, Culture, Youth Affairs Fisheries and Agriculture Dr. the Honourable Natalio Wheatley.
Honourable Wheatley welcomed the new citizens to the British Overseas Territory family, and reminded them that their diverse backgrounds mean they are well placed to promote harmony within the Territory.
“I would urge you to be on the forefront of the fight against dis-unity; the fight against hatred; the fight against xenophobia,” Honourable Wheatley stated. He added, “Despite all our differences, we are all united in love for this Territory and seeking to make it a better place for all of us.”
The day’s ceremony was the second of three planned ceremonies organised to allow for safe physical distancing.
NOTE TO EDITORS: Photo included
Photo caption: The 26 newly naturalised British Overseas Territories Citizens posed for a photo with His Excellency the Governor Augustus J. U. Jaspert; Deputy Premier and Minister of Education, Culture Youth Affairs, Fisheries and Agriculture Dr. the Honourable Natalio Wheatley; Registrar General Mrs. Stephanie Benn and Reverend David Stedman.