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Regrello dedicates Mayoral appointment to late mother
Newly installed Mayor of San Fernando Junia Regrello, yesterday, dedicated his appointment to his mother, May Arthur, whom he said died an unhappy woman in 1978, because she was unable to fulfill her dream of properly educating her six children.
In his inaugural address, Regrello told the audience, which included Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, of her story. A domestic worker who was fired from her job after she got pregnant for her employer, an Italian expatriate who was employed with Texaco at the time.
He said all his mother, who went on to bear five other children, had to give him, was his father’s name. He never knew him. He said Arthur sold pastries to take care of his siblings, who each had different fathers, and died at age 52, from cancer, unhappy because none of her children finished secondary school.
“I want to say to her where ever she is today, your eldest son is now the Mayor of the City of San Fernando,” Regrello who now possess two degrees, said to loud applause. Les Efforts East/Cipero Vidya Mungal Bissessar, was appointed deputy mayor, a position Regrello held in the last administration.
Regrello, a former MP for San Fernando West, who has just completed a book on his mother’s history, said he decided to share this story because there are so many single mothers out there who feel the situation is hopeless.
“But if you persevere and you have ambition and you work hard, you can make it,” he advised.
Regrello thanked his predecessor, Kazim Hosein, now Minister of Rural Development and Local Government, for the astuteness, steadfastness and diligence he applied in his effort to make San Fernando a better place.
“Kazim is a tough act to follow and has left big shoes to fill,” he said but pledge to continue the work he started, work with his ministry and central government to formulate policies that will result in an improved quality of life for the people.
He identified a number of ills which continue to plague the city, including traffic woes, inadequate funding, homelessness and property owners who blatantly refuse to obey the law, but remains optimistic the new council under his guidance will provide solutions.
One of his goals is to foster prudent relationship with the private sector to reduce the burden on central government.
In thanking Rowley for the opportunity to continue to serve, Regrello said when it became evident he was the chosen one, he delved into his character to analyse his habits and shortcomings, evoking laughter as he added, “if any.”
Saying his wife, Kamla, has often chided him for holding his head high and not greeting people as he walk the streets, Regrello asserted, “I am not perfect in this imperfect world.
“I have made my mistakes. I have mashed a few corns. I have taken my knocks. I have fallen a few times, but I have stood up like a man when required to and therefore I can only pledge to you the people of San Fernando that I would do my best.”
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