Overwhelming endorsement for new Trelawny custosThursday, February 25, 2021
BY HORACE HINES
FALMOUTH, Trelawny - After being instrumental in staging one of the most successful Hague Agricultural shows last year, Member of Parliament for Trelawny Northern Tova Hamilton is disheartened that the novel coronavirus pandemic ruled out this year's staging of the annual show, which is customarily held under the patronage of the custos of the parish.
The two-day event is usually staged on the day before Ash Wednesday and on Ash Wednesday.
Hamilton is, however, hopeful that next year the show will be successfully held, with input from the new Custos of Trelawny Hugh Gentles, a farmer from the southern parts of the parish.
“I am disappointed that we weren't able to have Hague show for obvious reasons. The custos is normally a patron of that show, and I am hoping that next year we can become bigger and better and that the custos will be there front and centre. We have a lot of activities going on; I am very excited that he is a farmer too. I am sure his input will be great. I am looking forward to it,” Hamilton told the Jamaica Observer West.
Gentles, who was sworn in at a small ceremony at King's House by Governor General Sir Patrick Allen on Tuesday, February 16, is hopeful that the show will be a success next year.
“One of the things that falls under the custos is that he is the patron of the Hague Agricultural Show. So, from that perspective I would love to see a dynamic show, something that showcases all the best for the parish, all the best of its agricultural produce and its agricultural output,” Gentles said.
Gentles has been overwhelmingly endorsed by a variety of stakeholders in the parish to serve in the position vacated by Paul Muschett after 11 years of service.
Hamilton threw her backing behind the newly sworn in custos.
“I wish him well because it is a very important role that needs to be filled. We do have a lot of work to do, we have relationships to build. I haven't met him personally, so I cannot really speak to his personality as yet, but I am looking forward to speaking with him,” said Hamilton.
Member of Parliament for Trelawny Southern Marisa Dalrymple Philibert also backed Gentles.
“I fully endorse him. I think he will do a wonderful job,” said Dalrymple Philibert.
Similar sentiments were expressed by mayor of Falmouth, Councillor C Junior Gager.
“I have no doubt that Mr Gentles will do well in the post. I am in agreement with his appointment,” Gager said.
The Trelawny Chamber of Commerce and Industry also agreed with Gentles' appointment.
“Your appointment bodes well for the parish, given your long-standing commitment of service to Trelawny as an outstanding community advocate, farmer and businessman,” said chair of the Trelawny Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Shellion Rhoden.
She said the Trelawny Chamber is looking forward to meeting with Custos Gentles with a view to having discussions on the further development of the parish.
The main role of the custos is to represent the governor general as the first citizen of their respective parishes.
Among the other core functions of the custos is to engage in activities that promote the rule of law, public order and civic pride.
He or she is responsible for recommending and swearing-in justices of the peace and for supervising the execution of their legislative functions.
The custos also gives leadership to the Governor General's Programme for Excellence, with emphasis on service and recognition through the Governor General's Achievement Awards and the I Believe Initiative.
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