British Ambassador honours Newport
27 March 2009 at Newport Civic Centre
The British Ambassador to Georgia, Denis Keefe, came to Newport on Friday to honour the achievements there of Newport City Council and the Newport Kutaisi Twinning Association (NKTA). He was received by the Mayor, civic leaders and Paul Flynn, MP for Newport West. He was then the guest of the NKTA.
Most Newportonians would be at first amazed but then very proud of what people in Kutaisi, the second city of Georgia, a country 5 hours flight away-
For them Newport is one of the most important cities in the UK if not the world, such is the support they have received.
The City Council has provided help, professional advice and equipment to many departments in its twin city, from librarians through to massive support and
training for social workers . Other bodies in and around Newport have also contributed; the Royal Gwent Hospital regularly provides training (in Newport and in Georgia), support and surplus equipment.
The Fire Brigade organised memorable training for their counterparts very recently. Much of this work is co-
Unfortunately for Georgia it is no longer necessary to explain that this is not a US state-
Georgia, like most former Soviet satellite countries, has struggled to come into the real world, regarding its economy but more importantly with democracy. His Excellency said that at least 10 years had been lost after independence in 1991. Democracy is still not assured, the Rose Revolution was only 5 years ago.
Dennis Keefe with Leader of the Council, Matthew Evans
Dennis Keefe, Catherine Phillpott, and Paul Flynn MP
One major achievement of the Georgian government has been to stop everyday corruption: poverty-
The British people are well-
The Ambassador recognised that Georgia’ main assets are its landscape, its climate and, above all, its people. Here His Excellency paid tribute to the NKTA. Although it is small its work is important-
Dennis Keefe, Catherine Phillpott