It is now four years since that horrific fire claimed the lives of six young women who were daughters, mothers, sisters, other relatives and friends. I know that their families and friends are still grappling with the loss of their loved ones.
As we remember the victims of that sinister act on September 3, 2010, and reflect on their lives, we must also find ways to stop the perpetuation of violent acts which result in the loss of lives of our most productive citizens.
In recent times, we have been experiencing a level of violence which is unfamiliar to our society and this is a worrying trend for all of us. As a nation, we decry these acts but we must do more. We have to unearth the root cause or causes and deal with them head-on.
It appears that there is a small segment in our society who believe that acts of violence can solve problems. The majority of us know that this is not the case.
I therefore applaud the many organisations that are addressing the situation. Many of them are reaching out to our young people to educate them about conflict resolution and are also exploring the reasons for the upsurge in violence being displayed in our society.
I believe that we need to reinforce our traditional values which include the sanctity of human life and being our brother???s keeper. We must all work together to find solutions to correct this situation which has the potential to erode the positive image of our country which we have worked hard to build over several generations.
I therefore give my full support and that of my Government to the request made by the September 3rd Foundation Inc. to use the occasion of the anniversary of the Campus Trendz tragedy, to remember the six victims and the twenty-eight persons who have lost their lives due to violent acts since September 3, 2013, in the observance of a minute of silence at noon on Wednesday, September 3, 2014.
I encourage all Barbadians and others to use this occasion to reflect on what we can do to rid our society of this wave of violence which is being manifested in all its forms.