[xml][/xml]
The Bahamas Weekly Facebook The Bahamas Weekly Twitter
News : Bahamas Information Services Updates Last Updated: May 7, 2015 - 7:57:38 AM


Bahamas National Security Minister welcomes 74 new RBDF recruits
By Gena Gibbs, BIS
May 3, 2013 - 3:19:29 PM

Email this article
 Mobile friendly page
0061.JPG
Minister of National Security the Hon. Dr. Bernard Nottage inspects the marines of New Entry 50 and Woman Entry 20 during the Passing Out Ceremony, May 2, at HMBS Coral Harbour. (BIS Photo/Patrick Hanna)

Nassau, The Bahamas --  Seventy-four new marines were added to the Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF) at the May 2 Passing out Ceremony at the Coral Harbour Base of New Entry 50 and Woman Entry 20.  

National Security Minister the Hon. Dr. Bernard Nottage was in attendance and recognised the 49 males and 25 females as the largest entry in the history of the Defence Force to have successfully completed New Entry Training.

"Over the past 17 weeks since you entered the gates of HMBS Coral Harbour on the 12 January, you were exposed to both the theoretical and practical for 18 subject areas, which included professional areas such as Seamanship, Navigation, Small Arms, and First Aid as well as academic areas such as Mathematics and English.  During training you were also taught the importance of discipline and character development.  Additionally, you underwent a vigorous physical training programme.  Together, these are all critical tools that form the foundation of your career in this military establishment."

Dr. Nottage reminded the new marines that the RBDF currently patrols 100,000 square miles of sea and over 2,000 islands, rocks, and cays to ensure the safety and security of The Bahamas against transnational criminals and their illicit activities.  He said the mission is a demanding one that calls on, and challenges every Officer and Marine to defend the sovereignty of The Bahamas, and assist with maintaining law and order.  Dr. Nottage also mentioned the RBDF is known for performing humanitarian tasks in conjunction with local and regional partners.

0098.JPG
Minister of National Security the Hon Dr. Bernard Nottage presents Marine Recruit Tevin Williams with the award for Best Male Recruit, during the New Entry 50 and Woman Entry 20 Passing Out Ceremony, May 2, at HMBS Coral Harbour. (BIS Photo/Patrick Hanna)

He said the Defence Force's decentralisation strategy remains a primary focus and that by establishing bases throughout The Bahamas, the Defence Force aims to maintain a continuous presence at strategic points throughout the Bahamian archipelago. 

"This, we believe, will act as a deterrent against transnational maritime threats as well as enable the Defence Force to enhance its capacity to apprehend foreign poachers, illegal migrants, human traffickers, and drug and firearm smugglers, who seek to violate our laws and diminish our prospects for peace and prosperity," said Dr. Nottage.

Dr Nottage said the Bahamas Government is currently looking forward to the rapid development of a base at Gun Point in Ragged Island and that this strategic location in the southern Bahamas will allow the Defence Force to maintain a constant presence in the Great Bahama Bank area where foreign poachers are known to plunder marine resources.

He said construction of the harbour is nearing completion to facilitate mailboats, as well as to accommodate the Defence Force's 200-foot patrol craft.  Plans are also being developed to construct a modern base facility, designed to accommodate up to 35 marines adjacent to the harbour.

Minister Nottage said the Defence Force is conducting strategic operations out of the island of Bimini, with the pending increases in boating activity in the Western Bahamas.  He noted that the joint Port Security Operations with the Royal Bahamas Police Force (RBPF) to facilitate ferries and cruise ships operating out of Florida have yielded positive results.

"The Government of The Bahamas is currently in negotiations with Damen Shipyards that is based in The Netherlands, for the acquisition of eight medium to long-range patrol vessels over the next three years with the first vessels scheduled to arrive in The Bahamas by mid-2014," said Dr. Nottage.

"This acquisition will also include an auxiliary vessel to provide timely transport of emergency relief supplies to disaster-stricken areas around our archipelago, and the development of new and existing bases and harbour facilities at Coral Harbour, Mathew Town, Gun Point, Ragged Island and in the northern Bahamas."

0095.JPG
Samantha Paul is presented with the Best Female Recruit Award from Minister of National Security the Hon. Dr. Bernard Nottage, during the New Entry 50 and Woman Entry 20 Passing Out Ceremony, May 2, at HMBS Coral Harbour. (BIS Photo/Patrick Hanna)

Dr Nottage said the Acquisition Project, also termed the Sandy Bottom Project, will support the Force's decentralisation strategy and will significantly improve the Defence Force's operational response time to maritime incidents.

"The Sandy Bottom Project will represent the single largest capital investment the Government of The Bahamas would have made in the 33year existence of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force.  In total, the project will cost approximately $200 million.  In addition to the vessels and infrastructural assets I referred to earlier, it will provide employment opportunity for more than 800 new service members thus substantially increasing the manpower of the Defence Force from its current complement of 1154 to 1900 Officers and Marines over a three to four year period," said Dr. Nottage.

Dr Nottage reminded the marines that as a sea-going force, all recruits are required to serve abroad sea-going patrol craft.  He said the Force is required to detect, deter, and impede the flow of illegal immigration through our borders and are also expected to intervene and arrest those who poach in our waters, to assist with Search and Rescue operations, to support local and regional law enforcement partners, and provide relief assistance during times of disasters or national emergencies.

"As members of the Defence Force, you are leaders in your own right.  You help set the standard of excellence for others to emulate.  You are among our nation's finest.  You are a part of a flexible, dependable, adaptable, and dynamic organisation that consists of some of the most highly trained professionals of the modern Bahamas.  I encourage you to wear your uniform with pride and maintain the highest standard of integrity and military bearing wherever you go on or off the job," said Dr. Nottage.

Dr Nottage urged the newest members of the Force to be steadfast and confident in their abilities. He said it will not be easy, but with God, all things are possible. 

"Your country is depending on you; your families are depending on you in fulfilling this great call to 'Guard our Heritage'," said Dr. Nottage.

Bookmark and Share


© Copyright 2013 by thebahamasweekly.com

Top of Page

Receive our Top Stories



Preview | Powered by CommandBlast

Bahamas Information Services Updates
Latest Headlines
The Bahamas & IDB Launch Public Survey in New Providence
DPM Davis opens Arts and Craft Centre in Grand Bahama
Bahamas Governor General Pays Her Respects to Former Senator, the Hon. Edwin "Wyke" Brown‏
New Grand Bahama Arts and Crafts Centre Opens
Notice for Bahamians traveling to Trinidad & Tobago
Bahamian farmer Forrester Bowe, a good ambassador
E. P. Roberts Primary Sixth Grade Students call on Bahamas Governor General
Nottage at annual Service of The Royal Bahamas Police Force‏
NHI Secretariat responds to the Bahamas Insurance Association
Bahamas Drone Regulations Statement by Ministry of Transport & Aviation
National Health Insurance Town Meeting in Freeport, Grand Bahama
Justice Vera Watkins Sworn In at Government House
Deputy Prime Minister Announces New Agreement for BEC
DPM Davis Announces Management Services Agreement BPL and PowerSecure‏
Senator Bell communication on the Petroleum Bill, 2015‏
Bahamas Immigration Department responds to Tribune article about Bruno Rufa
Bahamas Governor General Visits Long Island‏
Backyard Farming Linked to Food Security
PM Christie on the Status of the Hawksbill Creek Agreement
Attorney General Addresses the Senate on Petroleum Bill
Bahamas' Attorney General Speaks to Students at Eugene Dupuch Law School
South Florida Residents Give $15,000 Towards Hurricane Joaquin Relief
Heads of Agreement Signed for $200 Million Luxury Resort in the Exuma Cays
PM Christie remarks at Heads of Agreement Signing for Williams Cay/Children's Bay‏
Bahamas Governor General Visits Rum Cay
Fred Mitchell on Collapse of Gazebo in Eastwood Park
Even with Current Growth Grand Bahama Economy Must Move to Sustain Itself
Justice Allen Urges Media to Practice Responsible Reporting
China Spring Festival and Junkanoo reunite families
Minister Darville Welcomes Students of 'Sandra Edgecombe 2015 Sports of Champions'‏
Bahamas Customs Honours Officers for Long Service
Crew member death reported on vessel docked at Smith's Bay, Cat Island
Governor General and the Prime Minister Attend the Red Cross Ball
Director of Autism Speaks calls on Social Services Minister‏
State-Recognized Funeral announced for Edwin 'Wykee' Brown
OAS Scholarship Award Recipients from Bahamas Announced
NHI Aims to Make The Bahamas Healthiest Country in the Region
Zika Virus Communication in Bahamas House of Assembly by Dr. Gomez
Hon. Shane Gibson Remarks on IDB Citizen Security Loan
Bahamas Attorney General responds to Tribune article