A Cabinet minister yesterday urged Bahamians to shop at home and help rebuild the economy post-COVID-19 as he opened a $3m Grand Bahama shopping plaza.
Iram Lewis, minister of state for disaster preparedness, management and reconstruction, spoke out as he opened the newly-constructed Brickhouse Plaza, located on Alcester Road.
The 21,000 square foot plaza, with 20 retail spaces, is owned by Pastor Lloyd Rolle, and was constructed by his Brickhouse Construction Company.
Mr Lewis said the development demonstrated investor confidence in the Grand Bahama economy, and he encouraged residents to shop at home to assist in rebuilding a community that has been devastated by both Hurricane Dorian and COVID-19.
“I am pleased to see that this is an investment from a local son of the soil who has utilised his God-given talent to achieve new heights," he added of Pastor Rolle. The property was purchased one week before Hurricane Dorian hit, and will now house a beauty salon, sports lounge, bakery, pizzeria, pre-0school and pharmacy.
Also present for the opening ceremony were Philip Davis, Leader of the Opposition, as well as Senator Fred Mitchell, the Progressive Liberal Party's (PLP) chairman, leaders of the religious community and family and friends.
Mr Lewis said: “This speaks volumes to the confidence that Bahamians have in The Bahamas. As the previous speaker (Philip Davis) said, it is on us. We are in this together and it is important. We welcome foreign investors to come to Grand Bahama, but when we can do it ourselves it speaks volumes.
Stating that what Pastor Rolle had done was take a leap of faith, he added: “I want to encourage all to support your local investors. This $3m could’ve gone elsewhere but it was put into this community. I want to urge you to support Mr. Rolle in this very important venture. Grand Bahama is going to be bigger, better and stronger because of persons like you through the Grace of the Almighty God.”
Iram Lewis, minister of state for disaster preparedness, management and reconstruction, officially opens Brickhouse Plaza, a new 21,000 square foot building owned by Pastor Lloyd Rolle. (BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)
SUPPORT – Pastor Lloyd Rolle opened his new plaza on yesterday. Iram Lewis, minister of state for disaster preparedness, management and reconstruction, encouraged residents to shop at home and help rebuild the economy. (BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)
RIBBON CUTTING – Following the brief opening ceremony, Iram Lewis, minister of state for disaster preparedness, management and reconstruction took part in the ribbon cutting ceremony. Cutting the ribbon was 14-year-old Kervanna McCartney, granddaughter of Brickhouse Plaza owner, Pastor Lloyd Rolle. (BIS Photo/Lisa Davis)