Chief Secretary Ancil Dennis has announced a 17-man team to chart Tobago’s economic development post covid19.
Speaking at Wednesday’s virtual post-executive council news conference at Scarborough Library, Dennis said the team comprises mostly “young, vibrant, bright, knowledgeable and committed Tobagonians.”
The committee, which began its work on June 1, is chaired by Dr Selvon Hazel, the chief economist, division of finance and the economy who is also on the national roadmap to recovery team.
The Tobago committee is divided into seven sectors: finance; tourism; food production; governance, productivity and human resource; sustainability and innovation; creative economy and social development.
The team comprises Nafeesa George (policy analyst, Division of Finance); Shirley Cooke (entrepreneur); Korice Nancis (marketing coordinator); Pathlene Titus (agronomist); Dedan Daniel (Tobago Agriculture Society president); Ricardo Alfred (farmer); Verleen Bobb-Lewis (retired educator); Godwin Richardson (former TRHA CEO); Dr Stephen Sheppard (CEO, THTI); Dr Ryan Allard; Melanie Trim (renewable energy expert); Hassel Bacchus (chief technical officer, TSTT); John Arnold (cultural activist); Khalen Jamoi Alexander (musician); Dr Crystal Benjamin (Newsday Tobago columnist) and Dr Alina Williams (psychologist).
Dennis said the team will be active for six months.
“I expect the first report coming from that working group within the first two months.”
He said the team is expected to work towards identifying specific policy measures that the island should adopt at this time to ensure it is given the “best chance of recovery and given the best opportunity to take advantage of every opportunity that may come as a result of this pandemic.”
He added: “I look forward with great excitement and expectations to their work.”
Dennis thanked the members of the committee for accepting the task.
“All of us will have ideas and suggestions but not many of us are willing to put our best foot forward and really do the work that is required of us at this time.”
He said the group must be commended.
“I sincerely thank them on behalf of all Tobagonians and the country by extension for accepting this call to service at this time.”