Dr. Henderson, left, and Julius "Handbag" Gabriel
Dr. Henderson, left, and Julius "Handbag" Gabriel

Promises of a more prosperous Grand Bay are among plans articulated by all three candidates vying for the position of Parliamentary Representative for that constituency.

As the day for the election draws nearer –November 25– independent candidate, Clarington Bacchus Andrew also known as Twa Woche vows to take the Grand Bay from roots to flowers like his symbol the tree; Julius "Handbag" Gabriel articulates his visions of a more liberated Grand Bay while the Dominica Labour Party (DLP) nominee Dr. Vince Henderson professes his intention to have the constituency back as the cultural city of Dominica.

The Grand Bay constituency has not had a non-Grandbarian as their sitting parliamentary representative since 1961. However, DLP hopeful in the by-election Dr. Henderson says, a revival in culture is among his major objectives in the constituency if elected to serve.

His comments came at a recent meeting in Grand Bay as he told attendees that the constituency needs to regain the title of the cultural capital of Dominica.

Dr. Henderson also said his focus will be placed on the continued development of Ma Toutou's Park and other sites in Grand Bay as he is hoping to increase the tourism sector in the southern communities.

"We need to ensure that we develop the tourism sector in Grand Bay and one of the things we must do is to see how we can develop sites and services. For example, the Geneva river, in Layou they have river tubing and that is something we can seriously pursue here to grow...and of these projects will generate revenue for the Grand Bay constituency."

Dr. Henderson further revealed that he along with the Parliamentary Representative for the Petite Savanne constituency, Dr. Kenneth Darroux are jointly pursuing plans for a fisheries complex in the south.

He said the establishment will not only facilitate fisherfolk but can be used as another port of entry thereby involving the yachting sector in the south of the island.

The DLP hopeful encouraged the youths to take advantage of the educational opportunities available to them while assuring National Employment Programme (NEP) works that efforts are being made to secure permanent employment on their behalf.

He further averred that a location must be identified in Grand Bay to honour heroes.

Meanwhile, Gabriel, who recently launched his campaign told constituents that among his development plans for Grand Bay includes, full economic enfranchisement for all, the creation of sustainable job opportunities especially for the youths, the establishment of a knowledge-based culture centre in Grand Bay, and a push to extend pioneer status to farmers and fisherfolk, who he claims has been unfairly treated by the DLP despite the decades-old loyalty.

Among other objectives of the would-be parliamentary representative include land reform and the transformation of the Geneva playing field to stage international games.

"I am here to save Grand Bay. We have too many people overseas, they want to come down and open businesses for young people to work and they cannot and that hurting me. Too much (sic) people have to go down on their knees and cry to Skerrit," he said.

He expressed full confidence in his chances of winning at the poll.

"I dropped out of school to chase manicou and then I turn to a bus driver conductor. From conductor I go to bus driver and from bus driver I'm going to be a parlrep to serve my constituency," Handbag said.

Gabriel's candidacy was endorsed by several individuals, one of which included Dominican-born attorney Gabriel Christian who is based in the United States of America (USA).

"I endorse tonight Julius Gabriel, a young man from Grand Bay who does not depend on handouts. He does not depend on bribes to make a living, he earns his honest living by driving his bus and serving his community. Julius Gabriel is the David that will take down Goliath," Christian said.

Christian says the once "liberated" Grand Bay can only return to such stature by removing the incumbent government.

He said with the help of Dominicans abroad like himself, Gabriel will be able to form a Grand Bay community development cooperation, an organization that will allow constituents to come together to achieve several things around the constituency.

An institute of plant medicine and construction engineering in Grand Bay are also among their development plans.

Andrew, the second independent candidate in the race during a recent interview with The Sun said, a revamp in sports and arts is among the development plans to be pursued by him if elected on November 25, 2021.