Port Arthur city leader, term complete, offers thanks

Published 7:11 pm Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Osman Swati served at his final meeting as a member of the Port Arthur City Council on Tuesday. The District 6 seat, which he has filled, was among two seats eliminated by Port Arthur voters. He said farewell to his council colleagues and constituents with this letter, from which he read:

It has been a huge privilege and honor to serve on this council for the past three years and for that I am thankful to the Almighty Lord. There are no words to express my gratitude for this opportunity.

I would like to take this opportunity to offer my sincerest apologies to anyone that may have felt offense by my actions or the words I have spoken during my tenure as member of this council.

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I’m extraordinarily grateful for the privilege bestowed on me in being your representative these past few years. I have done my best to serve this city and the council in all that I have done. Even though we all may not always agree, that is in essence the beauty of democracy. Our discussions and difference in opinions lead to the tough decisions made for the overall benefit of the citizens we all represent.

I am grateful to all the city employees for the respect they have granted me and I salute your hard work and diligence in providing our citizens the best service possible. Despite the various challenges you must face on a daily basis you continue to work through them. Thank you.

To my past and present colleagues on this council, I personally thank every one of you for allowing me the privilege to serve with you in this honorable position. There have been many bumps down this road and nobody will be here forever. But as long as we can proudly say that we have worked together with respect and integrity I can ask for nothing more. I wish you all the best and thank you once again.

Last, but most importantly, my citizens: Without your support I could not have made it this far. For that I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I may be leaving this council today but for you all I leave this message:

This council is a direct product of your vote. Every single person that sits on this dais today is here because you have allowed them to be here. The day you realize the power you hold as a citizen of this city then you will understand that no one, no matter what official capacity they hold, can supersede what you want as a citizen of this city. My respected citizens, stay engaged in the municipal process as this is where you can bring about the most change that directly affects each and every one of you in your everyday lives. Exercise your civic duty to vote, maintain a close connection with the municipal practices and hold your representatives accountable for their actions or inactions. This is how you will see real change come about in the city government and its processes.

Today someone asked me, “Was it worth it?” My response was “without any doubt in my mind and heart.” I love Port Arthur and I would love to see this city thrive to its maximum potential. Although there are many hurdles to overcome, hard work, patience and unity will assist us all in achieving those goals.

If my assistance is required at any time for any reason whatsoever I will make myself available to the city staff and its council. With that I say my farewell and pray that God’s blessings continue to shower upon this city and its citizens.

Thank you.