Lest We Forget
From December 2005, an excellent speech by Senator Stuart Syvret, at the end of the States sitting, when senior members - a Senator, Deputy and.Constable - make a Christmas speech. In that year, he had just topped the Island wide vote for Senator.
This was at the start of Ministerial Government, and while there has been some goodwill, it has also produced more of a polarising effect between those who are within the Council of Ministers, and those without.
Only in one area have most of the States seemed firmly united, in the reaction to the care inquiry, which cut across the divide between the executive and the backbenchers, and even there was some who were determined to criticise the inquiry findings rather than embrace them. Who would have known in 2005, that all that lay in the future, and that the turbulence that followed would end Senator Syvret's political career?
Unfortunately the victims of war are with us more than even in 2005, as they flee the war torn regions in the Middle East or in Burma where they are subjected to brutal torture and rape. And within our own local society, the divide between rich and poor has also widened. And rather than face this issue and that of the wider world, some people would wish to cut overseas aid as if that would address the problem of local poverty.
Christmas Message from Stuart Syvret
Christmas is nearly upon us and Christmas is, of course, the season of goodwill. It is also the very beginning of an entirely new system of government for the Island and an entirely new way of working and a whole new approach to addressing the issues that face our community by this Assembly.
It is to be hoped that the spirit of goodwill, which we enjoy at this time of year, is carried over into the new system of government, not only in the months ahead but the years ahead, so that we can work co-operatively and constructively with one another, in which we respect our differences of opinion but we work together for the greater advantages of the community.
It is important to remember that we perhaps can be very inward looking in this Chamber and perhaps, to some extent, in the Island. We need to remind ourselves, no matter what the difficulties we face at present in Jersey, they are as nothing compared to the troubles and difficulties that many, many millions and indeed billions of people around the world are experiencing.
I think it is wholly right that, at this time of year, we do turn our thoughts to the outside world and the troubles, the difficulties, the poverty, the starvation and the war that affect so many places around the world and hope indeed that things improve, that governments and international bodies can in fact become more focused on addressing the needs of the world and addressing the needs of the world’s poor and dispossessed, the hungry and those victims of war.
So let us hope also that some of the great good fortune and benefit that we enjoy in this Island will go out to more people around the globe in the year ahead.