The Honourable Philip E. Davis
Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas
Remarks For Passing Out Parade – New Entry 58 Woman Entry 27 Royal Bahamas Defence Force
4 February 2022
New Entry 58 and Woman Entry 27, it is a privilege to offer you my heartfelt congratulations on the completion of your initial basic training in the Royal Bahamas Defence Force. You could have chosen a less demanding path, but instead you chose a career of service, and for that you have my gratitude and – I feel confident in saying — the gratitude of your fellow citizens. Seeing all of you makes me so hopeful; I know it required great tenacity and determination to complete this rigorous training, so I know you are capable of great things. Today is not just a milestone, but a stepping-stone — you are now officially on your way in your professional military career.
The Royal Bahamas Defence Force is, of course, one of the most important institutions in our nation. In 1975, Sir Lynden Pindling spoke about the need for a force that would safeguard our newly independent nation’s sovereignty, rescue lives, defend our sea lanes, keep out poachers and smugglers, and provide emergency relief and medical services. All this and more the Royal Bahamas Defence Force has done, often with great distinction, while members of the force have embodied the discipline and self-reliance Pindling understood would be critical to our nation’s progress. Sir Lynden’s vision has been realized and now you become not only a guardian of that original vision, but part of the continuing project to modernize and adapt as we face new challenges in the 21st century.
Combatting threats today requires top analytical and technological skills. You will be patrolling our waters, conducting amphibious missions, and providing protection at governmental and diplomatic ports. You will be strategizing, planning, and executing complex missions. You will be using the latest tools, including drones (or Unmanned Arial Vehicles, UAVs) to fight transnational crime. New Entry 58 and Woman Entry 27, you are models for your peers, and we know the power of your example will help us continue to recruit the brightest young Bahamians of your generation as we strengthen and build our modern capabilities.
You will find that you will get out of your service what you put in. The true measure of your character will be evident not when you navigate calm waters, but turbulent ones. I urge you to put aside any complacency, and instead develop a reputation for accepting the hardest challenges. If you understand that when you face difficulties, you are being shaped for a purpose, you will rise to the moment every time.
New Entry 58 and Woman Entry 27, I know you will be guided by the Royal Bahamas Defence Force Vision and Mission and by the core values of Fair Play, Accountability, Integrity, Transparency, Hard Work, Fortitude, Unity, Leadership and Loyalty.
On behalf of the Government and people of a grateful nation, we sincerely thank you for answering this call to service. I wish you the greatest success in your military careers.
I know you will not forget the noble and steady purpose behind your enlistments. I know you will not only carry forward the legacy of excellence, but you will add to it in your own way. I know you will make us proud.
God’s blessings on you, New Entry 58 and Woman Entry 27.
May God bless the Royal Bahamas Defence Force.
And may God bless the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.