Bahamas: The House of Assembly Select Committee on Natural Resources made its first site visit this past week in North Andros, Bahamas.
The Committee members making the trip were: Michael A. Foulkes, Chairman, Shonel Ferguson, Picewell Forbes, Vaughn Miller, and Reece Chipman. Accompanying the Committee members were Carlton Bowleg, MP for the area, and Rashad Flowers, Assistant Clerk, House of Assembly.
Upon arrival last Tuesday in North Andros, there was a brief welcome ceremony. The Committee held meetings for the remainder of the day and also on Wednesday up to noon.
Over the two days, the Committee met with the North Andros Local Government Council, which is headed by Mr. Darquin Scott, Chief Councillor.
The Committee also met with Morgan’s Bluff Development Group representatives, including Mr. Hank Ferguson and Mr. Ted Baker, well-known Natural Resources Advocate Mr. Prescott Smith and community leaders including Mr. Alphonso Smith and Mr. Larry Newton. We thank them for their assistance.
The Committee spent Wednesday afternoon and Thursday until departure late afternoon making site visits. Wednesday was on-land natural resources for the most part, including Morgan’s Bluff, Well Fields, Red Bays (sponge and fish), and Charlie’s Blue Hole. Thursday was marine natural resources.
Mr. Prescott Smith took the Committee on tour, including the Barrier Reef, the Great Bahama Bank, the Tongue of the Ocean, Stafford Creek, and Flats. A delightful highlight of the tour was when about ten dolphins, including a baby dolphin, swam alongside the boat and jumped out of the water!
The Committee expresses its gratitude to the people of North Andros who warmly welcomed us and expressed great interest in the natural resources of their area. We also express our appreciation to Mr. Carlton Bowleg, North Andros MP, who accompanied us and brought remarks at the ceremony. The Committee says its thanks to Superintendent Moss and Inspector Russell, who were most helpful from the moment we arrived at our departure and throughout the visit.
The Committee expresses its gratitude to Mr. Prescott Smith, who took the group on the Marine Tour, ably and enthusiastically assisted by Ms. Ashley Colebrooke. Finally, we desire to thank the staff at Island Comfort Hotel for their excellent hospitality over the three days.
The Committee will continue its work this week in New Providence while also making plans for the next site visit, being Grand Bahama in February.