“As a soldier you must be loyal to your country Barbados, the organisation, the Barbados Defence Force (BDF) and then self.”
This advice was given recently at the Paragon Base, by High Court Judge, Mr. Justice William Chandler as he delivered the feature address at the BDF’s Passing Out Parade for the 41 recruits of Intake 1/2008.
“The qualities of a soldier as taught and reinforced during your training should be embraced and practised continually throughout your career whether in the military or civilian environment. The military has and will continue to operate on the theme of ‘Teamwork’,” Justice Chandler advised.
Describing the military as one of the most versatile work environments that anyone may encounter, the High Court Judge stressed that such versatility came from well trained, highly motivated soldiers who were supported by competent and caring leaders.
He also noted that recruitment was just the first step in the process of military development, and encouraged the recruits to remain mindful of the work that would be required of them, to ensure that the next stage in their development was met.
“Remaining focused and utilising the military skills taught in recruiting will assist you in adapting to this versatile environment. It is also important that you understand that the military operates and strives on industry, because through industry you can have a rewarding future in the BDF,” Justice Chandler observed.
He implored the new soldiers not to allow the negative influences in society to jeopardise their work or the reputation of the BDF. “Being a soldier requires sacrifice, but sacrifice is not only equated in time, but knowing how and when to separate oneself from those situations which, or persons whether they be friend or family, who desire to transgress the laws of the country,” the High Court Judge warned.
He urged the recruits to mirror the values of the BDF in their deportment and conduct. “Whether on or off duty and whether in Barbados or overseas, you must be a beacon of the excellent traditions and standards that we hold dear in this little country. Always display the type of behavior which brings credit to the BDF in particular and to Barbados in general,” Justice Chandler recommended.