Written by Glen Bart ,
Major General Stewart Saunders is featured speaker at Operation Rescue’s weekend fundraiser.
Basseterre, St. Kitts, 27th October, 2017 (MyVueNews.com) – Major General Stewart Saunders will be the featured speaker at Operation Rescue’s 3rd Annual Fundraiser, and patrons will gain important insights from his perspective on national security issues, said Dwyer Astaphan, a founding member of the social activism group.
The Major General is an advisor to the St. Kitts and Nevis Prime Minister on matters of national security.
According to Astaphan, he was invited to be the Guest Speaker because he believe there is much that can be learned from the Major General.
Astaphan said, “He does not restrict himself to just policing and the criminal justice methodologies. He is very much into the social intervention side of it. We believe he is amply qualified, and we are very excited to have him give the featured address.”
Giving a glimpse into what Saunders will speak about, Astaphan stated, “He is a highly experienced and qualified man. I think we have a lot to learn from him. He will share his perspective as to the way forward in national security and managing crime.”
At the end of the featured speaker’s presentation, the Major General will take questions and comments from the audience.
The dinner fundraising event will also have a presentation to the St.Kitts National Youth Parliament Association (SKNYPA), which Astaphan described as a leading organisation of young people in the country, and a group of possible future leaders of the country.
“We want to encourage them in social activism and into the new political and social cultures where you can debate things in a cordial, mature, responsible and analytical manner, and understand that differences are natural and healthy, rather than hostility and divisiveness,” Astaphan said.
The event is being used to raise funds primarily for the organisation’s radio program, The Operating Room, which is aired every Tuesday evening on WINN FM, as their current leading means of discussing their issues of national relevance.
Astaphan and several others founded Operation Rescue in 2011, as a social activist group.
According to Astaphan, the groups mission is about stimulating “thinking, more cordiality among the people, a greater sense of community mindedness, patriotism, better work ethics, good transparency and accountability in government”.
It also advocates for legislation on Integrity in Public Life and Freedom of Information, while pushing also for Constitutional and Electoral Reform, reforming of the education system and the criminal justice system.
And on the impact the group has had, Astaphan responded, “I think that an objective analysis would show that we have had an impact on the national debate and on the political debate and on the political culture in the country.”
He continued, “It is a monumental task, and we are encouraging citizens to understand that in order for them to get a better standard in all aspects of life and enterprise in the country, whether it is political, social, cultural, economic, or otherwise, then, they need to recognise that the major responsibility lies on them. The most important individual in the country is the citizen, and the biggest role is that of the citizen.”
In the context of democracy, Astaphan wants citizens to be more responsive, more attentive, more vigilant, and to understand that it is they, who, in a democracy, must direct the path of the nation.
Astaphan commented, “Such responsibility is not only for the ordinary citizen, but it is also for those who have been elected to serve…. We want to end the political culture of dependency and the sense of entitlement.”
Contemplating the past activities of the group, Astaphan said, “So, we have been busy, and I believe we have achieved some degree of success.”