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President Miranda Eaton’s Inaugural Address to Parliament[]

August 25, 2006 2:34pm

Chancellor: The President

President Miranda Eaton: (Piedmont, SDC) Thank you madam Chancellor. Councillors it gives me great pleasure to rise in this chamber this afternoon as President of these Federated States.

It is a tremendous honour and privilege that has been bestowed upon me by my party, by this chamber, but most of all this entire nation, to lead us through the challenges that we now face.

We live in a world that still struggles with peace and poverty, violence and environmental decay. Challenges that could not have been imagined 160 years ago when this great nation was founded. It is a testament to this nations founders that despite these new challenges we still have a system that works, and it is at this time that I would like to pay tribute to them, and to all those who have stood at this dais since 1840 and have put on the mantle of President of the Federation.

I am the 25th in a long line of great people to have held this office, each one of them a great man of their time. However, Madam Chancellor one thing sets me apart from this line of great men, from both sides of the aisle. I am not a man.

I stand before this chamber and this nation, the first woman ever to hold the office of President. Until just 15 minutes ago, not in the 14 decades of this great nations history has someone of my gender held this role.

When I was growing up, this small French Saydneyan could not have dreamed to one day be President of this country. To be president is a dream that has been denied the young women of this nation for too long. Well that has today been broken. I am here to say to all girls out there that you too can smash through those barriers and become what ever you wish to be. Dream large and you can make it happen.

It is a tremendous honour to be the first of my gender to hold this office. However, Madam Chancellor it is not my intention today to use my inaugural speech to speak only of feminist issues, although I care passionately about them. It is my intention today Madam Chancellor to say once and for all, a women is as capable as anyone else of representing all Saydneyans.

The role of President has not changed; I will represent all Saydneyans, regardless of race, colour, creed, religion or sex to the best of my abilities. I will fulfil my oath with integrity and with the drive that all 24 Presidents before me have done.

With that Madam Chancellor, I would like to thank my immediate predecessor President Emerson, who remains in this chamber today. He too broke down barriers to this chamber and showed that youth was no obstacle. He showed that all you need is good ideas and the courage to carry them out.

I hope Mr. President that I too can live up to that mantra. I believe I can and my first government will set about carrying on the work that the SDC government was elected to do since 1994.

However, Madam Chancellor I would not be true to myself and I would have made a lie of my previous comments if I did not say that I plan on taking us in a different directions. With the resignation of President Emerson, the baton has been passed to a new generation. This new government will not rest on it laurels, we will not look back at a glorious past, but we will continue to move forward.

We will invest in new policies in education and health, and we will examine the security of this country given the new threat of global terror. We must move forward or the work that has been done will be wasted. We cannot forget our past, but neither must we let it become us.

This new era will challenge this country but we are a nation that can and will overcome all adversity we face. I have faith in that. It was once said that a Saydneyan heart can never be conquered and I believe, that despite the adversities we may face that we will never lose I heart. I truly believe that we can achieve all that we set out to achieve; all we need do is never loose faith in our dreams and aspirations.

We are a great people, we are a people who will do ourselves proud and I am proud to have been elected your leader. It is an honour that I will do justice, so let me say today before this chamber, this nation and to god that I will take this nation towards a prosperous future with wisdom, with compassion and with a true belief in our ability to rise to all challenges and overcome all adversity. I hope you will come with me.

Thank You

(Applause, standing ovation.)