Last Saturday 13 August, Nigel Phillips CBE, accompanied by his wife Emma, arrived to assume the office of Governor of St Helena, Ascension, and Tristan da Cunha. Governor and Mrs. Phillips were met at St Helena Airport by the Acting Governor, the Chief Minister, Chief Secretary, and the Aide de Camp and were escorted to Plantation House. Governor Phillips' last appointment was Governor of the Falkland Islands.
Governor Phillips was sworn in the afternoon, just after 4pm, in front of the Court House in Jamestown. The Chief Secretary, Mrs Susan O’Bey, read the Royal Commission and the Chief Minister, Mrs Julie Thomas gave a welcome speech and spoke about the uniqueness of the Island and the many challenges facing a small island developing state. The Sheriff of St Helena, Mrs. Ethel Yon OBE, administered the Oaths of Office and gave the Address of Welcome.
In his Inauguration Address, Governor Phillips commented:
“It is a privilege, and a humbling one at that, to swear the oath of office to serve the communities of St Helena, Ascension Island and Tristan da Cunha as Governor. Each of the three Islands are remarkable in their own right, with extraordinary natural environments, cultures and history. I am in no doubt that it is the people who live in the three Islands who are best able to judge the path ahead and I look forward to learning from you.
“Emma and I have not before visited any of the three Islands, but I do feel we know a little about St Helena thanks to the Saint community on the Falklands and the unique nature of small Island communities. I can say only that we relish the opportunity to make this our home for the duration of our tenure. We know of the friendliness that typifies this community and we want to play our part. Let me also be clear that I absolutely want to visit Ascension and Tristan da Cunha as soon as I am able.”
Governor and Mrs Phillips then proceeded to the Court House where they met Members of the St Helena Legislative Council.