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The new Financial Secretary – ten days on the job

fs-colin-owen-dsc_6497Just after ten days on the job the new Financial Secretary after his first day in office sat with TMR Editor Bennette Roach in an exclusive interview when he gave his impressions of his new post, the island and how it compared along with his expectations and aspirations for the new post.

The Hon. Colin Owen spoke of St. Helena where he had served first fulfilling his career – “…as an audit manager.”

He explained how he moved from that and into his last post there as Financial Secretary. “My career was with the Audit Commission – then took up the Chief Auditor roll for two years and then moved over to be the Financial Secretary of St. Helena.”

The FS said he loved his role. “That was fantastic, I love my role, it’s been a great job,”” saying that, “the great thing about being Financial Secretary is that you deal with so many issues.”

That is the experience he was bring to Montserrat. “Everything comes across your desk because nearly everything has a financial implication at the end of the day,” he noted about the job, mentioning that “I was part of the change program for Government – where we modified and we changed and looked at the way finance worked there. We introduced a raft of new governance procedures.”

“There are many facets to my job,” he said mentioning, “part of what I did, was to ensure when I left that a team took over – and that was my aim all the way through. You can only do that when you’ve got good people around you.”

Owen says endorsing his intentions and what he sees as part of his role in the job. “I’m a big believer of letting people take on challenges delegating work of bringing people on and that’s what I did with my team during the last eighteen months.”

“What you need though is you know in certain professionals, you need them to be qualified and moving things forward – that is definitely my remit here and that’s what I hope; one day on my exit interview I can proudly say that there is people from Montserrat taking over the jobs and I’m leaving finance in a good healthy place.”

In the interview the FS recalls the similarities and differences between St. Helena and Montserrat, mentioning eg. Tourism and the needs to develop that. He mentions the breakwater and the airport developments in St. Helena which are similar needs for Montserrat. He notes: “Actually (the airport) it was the premise of the economic development; it’s what the airport business case was set on and that really is saying to me is only a way of securing economic development…”

The breakwater: “…the idea of the new breakwater really was so our vessels would come a little more up against it and offload straight – saving huge amounts of time and safety as well…”

Differences in the system of how Government functions where there isn’t a ministerial system in St. Helena, both British Overseas Territories.

Colin Owen is married with a wife a three children all with him on Montserrat. He spoke of his children and their love for sports. He will miss his golf. The two boys love soccer and cricket. “They’re very excited about starting school this week or so, but you know my first impression, it’s lovely, it’s welcoming, it’s friendly and it’s a great honor to be here,” he said.

He speaks of his finding Montserrat to be a beautiful place and compares it to St. Helena which is on the arid side. “My first impression, it’s a bit cliché I should think but it’s beautiful…One of things you notice very differently when you arrive here your island is very green, on St. Helena it’s green but it’s brown down at the coast.”

Owen was happy to report after ten days: “I’ve been working with some great people the last ten days. There are some real enthusiasm here, and some really good people who know what they’re doing. And that that’s been fantastic to see and you know I can give you that after ten days.” He hopes in the end – “… maybe in three years when we sit here. We can talk about some of the positives that happened in my tenure.”

He had already made some rounds: “The other thing I must comment on I’m sure lots of people do, but your nation is super friendly, everybody is friendly. It’s been wonderful walking around and talking to people, your people are very vocal which is wonderful,” no doubt putting into proper perspective all he must have heard surrounding his selection and appointment.

See and listen to the full interview:

 

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

fs-colin-owen-dsc_6497Just after ten days on the job the new Financial Secretary after his first day in office sat with TMR Editor Bennette Roach in an exclusive interview when he gave his impressions of his new post, the island and how it compared along with his expectations and aspirations for the new post.

The Hon. Colin Owen spoke of St. Helena where he had served first fulfilling his career – “…as an audit manager.”

He explained how he moved from that and into his last post there as Financial Secretary. “My career was with the Audit Commission – then took up the Chief Auditor roll for two years and then moved over to be the Financial Secretary of St. Helena.”

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The FS said he loved his role. “That was fantastic, I love my role, it’s been a great job,”” saying that, “the great thing about being Financial Secretary is that you deal with so many issues.”

That is the experience he was bring to Montserrat. “Everything comes across your desk because nearly everything has a financial implication at the end of the day,” he noted about the job, mentioning that “I was part of the change program for Government – where we modified and we changed and looked at the way finance worked there. We introduced a raft of new governance procedures.”

“There are many facets to my job,” he said mentioning, “part of what I did, was to ensure when I left that a team took over – and that was my aim all the way through. You can only do that when you’ve got good people around you.”

Owen says endorsing his intentions and what he sees as part of his role in the job. “I’m a big believer of letting people take on challenges delegating work of bringing people on and that’s what I did with my team during the last eighteen months.”

“What you need though is you know in certain professionals, you need them to be qualified and moving things forward – that is definitely my remit here and that’s what I hope; one day on my exit interview I can proudly say that there is people from Montserrat taking over the jobs and I’m leaving finance in a good healthy place.”

In the interview the FS recalls the similarities and differences between St. Helena and Montserrat, mentioning eg. Tourism and the needs to develop that. He mentions the breakwater and the airport developments in St. Helena which are similar needs for Montserrat. He notes: “Actually (the airport) it was the premise of the economic development; it’s what the airport business case was set on and that really is saying to me is only a way of securing economic development…”

The breakwater: “…the idea of the new breakwater really was so our vessels would come a little more up against it and offload straight – saving huge amounts of time and safety as well…”

Differences in the system of how Government functions where there isn’t a ministerial system in St. Helena, both British Overseas Territories.

Colin Owen is married with a wife a three children all with him on Montserrat. He spoke of his children and their love for sports. He will miss his golf. The two boys love soccer and cricket. “They’re very excited about starting school this week or so, but you know my first impression, it’s lovely, it’s welcoming, it’s friendly and it’s a great honor to be here,” he said.

He speaks of his finding Montserrat to be a beautiful place and compares it to St. Helena which is on the arid side. “My first impression, it’s a bit cliché I should think but it’s beautiful…One of things you notice very differently when you arrive here your island is very green, on St. Helena it’s green but it’s brown down at the coast.”

Owen was happy to report after ten days: “I’ve been working with some great people the last ten days. There are some real enthusiasm here, and some really good people who know what they’re doing. And that that’s been fantastic to see and you know I can give you that after ten days.” He hopes in the end – “… maybe in three years when we sit here. We can talk about some of the positives that happened in my tenure.”

He had already made some rounds: “The other thing I must comment on I’m sure lots of people do, but your nation is super friendly, everybody is friendly. It’s been wonderful walking around and talking to people, your people are very vocal which is wonderful,” no doubt putting into proper perspective all he must have heard surrounding his selection and appointment.

See and listen to the full interview: