Just days after Fire Chief Elvis Weaver officially retired, he has confirmed to Observer that his exit has been suspended and he is to remain in the role for a little longer.
Weaver – who also holds the position of Assistant Commissioner of Police – is the longest-serving member of the force, having joined 43 years ago.
Last Wednesday, Weaver celebrated his 62nd birthday, the current age of retirement in Antigua and Barbuda.
Yesterday he told Observer that the government wanted him to stay on to oversee the arrival and placing into service of some eagerly-awaited extra resources.
“I officially retired on the 23rd but the government has purchased four fire trucks and the authorities think it’s fitting that, having been in the fight so long, I should stay on until that comes to fruition.
“So I’m staying on for a bit with the support of my two senior officers and others,” he explained.
Weaver has long been vocal in calling for more equipment for the Fire Department which has faced much public criticism over its capacity to respond to emergencies.
He said the new trucks were expected to arrive in the country by the end of April.
“As soon as we get them out of the port they will be put right into service,” the Fire Chief said.
Weaver added that three of the trucks were coming from England, accompanied by technicians who will provide specific training before the vehicles hit the road.
Last November, Weaver was one of eight officers presented with meritorious awards by Governor General Sir Rodney Williams. He joined the police force in 1979 and has spent the bulk of the last four decades with the Fire Department, a transition he previously described as a calling.
He has held the position of Fire Chief for six and a half years.