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Darren Sammy offered Vincentian citizenship

Darren Sammy offered Vincentian citizenship

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For his distinction, excellent captaincy and leading the West Indies to a second World T20 Championship, captain Darren Sammy has been offered Vincentian citizenship.

This announcement was made on Friday at Cabinet Room by Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, during a meet and greet with Sammy.{{more}}

“Darren Sammy is a St Lucian by birth; because he is a citizen of the OECS, he is free to come here at anytime on a picture ID…, but I think that for his distinction, we can do no less than if he appreciates the important gesture, that he should be a citizen of citizen of St Vincent and the Grenadines.”

Gonsalves stated that the offer of citizenship was an outward sign of inward grace.

“These are not commodities for sale, because the highest office in the land is not that of Governor General, is not that of Prime Minister, but that of citizen and we would be very pleased to have someone like Darren Sammy as a citizen of St Vincent and the Grenadines,” he said to an elated Sammy.

During his remarks, Gonsalves marvelled on the remarkable feat that has taken place in West Indies cricket over the past year.

“It is remarkable, because we are a population of five million people, we are the smallest country…playing international cricket and to have won at the three different levels in the same format in one year is absolutely phenomenal.”

He commended Sammy on his leadership and his ability to draw out the talents of his team-mates.

“Darren Sammy came on the scene as a man with skills in batting and bowling and fielding, but he was stamped with the grace of leadership.

“The greatest mark of quality leadership is to draw out… of those whom you lead, to draw out of them goodness and quality and nobility and often-times to draw out of them goodness, quality and nobility, which they themselves do not as yet know that they possess. And when you can draw that out, that is a hall mark of high quality leadership,” Gonsalves said.

Sammy expressed his gratitude to the Prime Minister, stating that he was lost for words.

He noted that playing for West Indies had always been a dream of his and he did it a time when no St Lucian had even made it to the senior level.

“To even captain the team, it was not part of the plan…God has blessed me with some good influential people that have been very important to my development as a person and as a cricketer. I want to thank them for that.”

Sammy said that St Vincent has always felt like home and the support that Vincentians have given the West Indies has always been ‘tremendous’.

“PM Kenny Anthony caught me off guard when I got in, by renaming the Beausejour cricket ground after me and I’m still waking up, trying to understand if it’s true or not and in a space of three days for you to make that announcement, I’m truly, truly honoured and I want to thank you for your support of West Indies cricket and West Indies cricketers,” an ecstatic Sammy said.

West Indies under 19 players Gidron Pope and Obede Mc Coy, along with Minister of Tourism, Sports and Culture Cecil ‘Ces’ McKie, were also in attendance at the press conference.

Following the press conference, Sammy, Pope and Mc Coy took part in a motorcade put on by Digicel, sponsors of the West Indies cricket teams, in which they were all able to meet the Vincentian public and do their now famous ‘champion dance’. (CM)

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