The opening ceremony which took place at the Grand Lucayan Resort Freeport, in the Bahamas. This commenced with a flag parade of countries represented at the convention Nigeria flag was also on parade.
In her welcome address, FIDA International President Mrs Jethlyn A. Burrows, spoke on the importance of investing in women and girls as a key to advancing sustainable development. She encouraged delegates to take time out to enjoy the wonderful city of Bahamas.
Another welcome remark was by Ms Sarah St. George, Acting Chairman of the Grand Bahamas Port Authority Ltd. Her speech was laced with the story of her life: losing her mother at the age of 7 and being involved in a boating accident that claimed her right hand. Despite the set backs she proceeded to bag a degree in law and was also called to the English bar. She said that on the day she became a lawyer, she met “the greatest judge of the century” and “probably the greatest English judge of modern times”, Lord Denning. She sought to know his advise for her as a young lawyer. Lord Denning informed her that she cannot know more than she knew on the day of her call and that whatever legal argument she had to make must be viewed from the common sense position first before any other perspective.
Other speakers include the Hon J. Kwasi Thompson, Minister of state for Grand Bahama, The Commonwealth of The Bahamas who strongly advocated for opportunities in the Bahamas and implored delegates and their clients to take the opportunity of investing in the Bahamas. He also informed delegates that the Govermnent is reviewing its immigration policies with a view to allowing foreigners take up residence and citizenship in the Bahamas.
Also, Mr Khalil D. Parker, President Bahamas Bar Association welcomed delegates and congratulated the International President for Bringing the convention to the Bahamas. He noted that the Bahamas Bar has a committee working on issues that are of interest to FIDA nothing that the investment in education and empowerment of women and girls has been demonstrated to produce significant results in uplifting a society but economically and socially. He noted that the recent referendum in the Bahamas that failed to give equal rights to women will not dampen the resolve to champion the cause of women.