|Defence Force welcomes ‘historic’ first wave of Reserve Marines|
|Tuesday, 17 July 2012 08:22|
HMBS, Coral Harbour Base -- The Royal Bahamas Defence Force welcomed the first wave of Marine Reserves to its fold, almost 40 years after the establishment of the Marine Division of the Royal Bahamas Police Force – which served as the forerunner to the Royal Bahamas Defence Force.
Minister of National Security, Dr. the Hon. Bernard J. Nottage said the graduation of the 19 Marine Reserves and two Marine Reserve Officers after seven weeks of Basic Training at Her Majesty’s Bahamian Ship, Coral Harbour Base, marked “a special day in the development of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force.
”The National Security Minister admonished the Marine Reserves that they will have to heed the same call of duty as the Regular Force – without any excuses.
"Defence and national security often involves grave dangers and uncertainties and in this job you will contend with transnational criminals including illicit drug and arms traffickers; you are to be ready when called upon to serve at sea, ashore or aloft, to defend, patrol and protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of our country; you have to detect, deter and impede the flow of illegal immigration through our borders,” Dr. Nottage said.“Additionally, you have to intervene and arrest those who poach in our waters; you have to assist with Search and Rescue operations; you are to support our local and regional law enforcement partners and you are to rise to the occasion when disasters or national emergencies occur.”
The Reserves represent a variety of professions - pilots, air traffic controllers, engineers, nurses, tailors and computer systems analysts -a range of “human and intellectual capital” which Dr. Nottage said “strengthens the Force’s collective problem-solving capability and operational effectiveness thus better equipping the Force to achieve its mandate and responsibility to the Bahamian people.”
“You are a very special group as you form the foundation upon which we are to build the Reserve Force,” Dr. Nottage said. “Your passage from Marine Reserve Recruits to Marine Reserves not only augments and strengthens the ranks of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force, but now makes the Royal Bahamas Defence Force Reserve a reality, prepared and ready to serve at sea, aloft and ashore.”Dr. Nottage said the Defence Force Reserves are intended to provide essential reinforcement and “be a force multiplier.” The Reserves will also assist in ensuring a safe environment for the well-being of the people of The Bahamas and provide support in the promotion security and development.
To accomplish this objective, the Reserves were required to undergo the same basic training as regular Defence Force officers including a broad range of professional, naval and military disciplines such as Communications, Field Craft, Fire Fighting, First Aid, Navigation, Organisation, Rules of the Road, Seamanship, Small Arms, Ship Husbandry and Survival.“The successful completion of the demanding Reserve New Entry Training over the past seven weeks demonstrates your resolve to contribute to the defence of the territorial sovereignty of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas,” Dr. Nottage said.
“Notwithstanding the many options available to you, you decided to answer the highest call of citizenship – that of volunteering to serve your country. You represent the commitment of the Government and the people of The Bahamas to continually enhance the Defence Force’s capability.
“Remember that you are the foundation upon which we are building the Defence Reserve and that the foundation stones for a balanced success are honesty, character, integrity, faith, love and loyalty,” Dr. Nottage added.
Photo 1: Minister of National Security, Dr. the Hon. Bernard J. Nottage inspects the parade during "Passing Out" Ceremonies for the first squad of Royal Bahamas Defence Force Marine Reserves, held at HMBS, Coral Harbour Base. Dr. Nottage said the 19 men and women Marine Reserves and two Marine Reserve Officers will be the foundation upon which all future Defence Force Reserves Units will be built. Dr. Nottage was accompanied on his inspection by Petty Officer Arlington Clarke, RBDF Training Officer. (BIS Photo/Patrick Hanna).
Photo 2: Marine Reserve Luther Smith received the Best Male Recruit Award from Minister of National Security, Dr. the Hon. Bernard J. Nottage during "Passing-Out" Ceremonies for the first Marine Reserve Entry of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force. Also pictured (far left) are: Commodore Roderick Bowe, Commander, Defence Force and (at far right) Lieutenant Commander Frederick Brown, Training Officer. (BIS Photo/Patrick Hanna)
Photo 3: Woman Marine Reserve Stephanie Darville receives the Best Female Recruit Award from Minister of National Security, Dr. the Hon. Bernard J. Nottage during "Passing-Out" Ceremonies at HMBS, Coral Harbour Base. Also pictured (far left) are: Commodore Roderick Bowe, Commander, Defence Force, and (far right) Lieutenant Commander Frederick Bowe, Training Officer. (BIS Photo/Patrick Hanna)
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