Unapologetically a minister: Ming makes her mark
Bermuda’s first woman Minister of National Security said she was “humbled” by her appointment yesterday.
Renée Ming, the Progressive Labour Party MP for St George’s North, highlighted that she had spoken in the House of Assembly less than two weeks ago about “the inclusion of women in government and leadership roles”.
She added that she had thought about a leadership role since the General Election.
Ms Ming said: “Today is a day I have thought about since July 18, 2017, but everything happens in God’s time.”
But she added: “Today is not only about Renée Ming. Today is encouragement for every daughter, sister, mother, aunt and grandmother who aspires to leadership in our community.”
Ms Ming said she recognised that she had taken up the post because Wayne Caines, her predecessor, was ordered to quit after he and Zane DeSilva, formerly the tourism and transport minister, breached Covid-19 health regulations at a private dinner party this month.
The event had been given a Ministry of National Security exemption on the 50 people gathering limit.
She said the circumstances were “unfortunate”.
Ms Ming told the swearing-in ceremony at Government House that she had “great shoes to fill and I will hit the ground running”.
Her background is in financial services, but Ms Ming said she was well versed in Bermuda Police Service operations.
The 48-year-old added: “I’m also a mom. In thinking about solutions with regard to national security, I am well aware of the issues we face in terms of violence and gangs.
“I look forward to meeting the Commissioner of Police to sit down and hear what their plan is, and see how we can work together.”
Ms Ming said: “I think the dedication, the commitment and the passion is going to be a big deal and it’s going to get me through in this job.”
Elaine Butterfield, the executive director of the Women’s Resource Centre, said the charity was “ecstatic” at Ms Ming’s appointment.
Ms Butterfield added: “Besides being a very capable woman with the skills, integrity and experience to get the job done well, we are excited to see another woman being appointed to the Cabinet.
“Her appointment will bring a very balanced perspective in decision-making around issues such as spousal rights, children of Bermudians rights to stay in Bermuda and other outdated forms of inequity towards women that still exists in our laws.
“This appointment is resounding, considering the challenge it must have been to the Premier to make two such important appointments.”
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