KINGSTON, Jamaica, November 30, 2021 - President of the People's National Party and Leader of the Opposition, Mark Golding has extended congratulations to the government and the people of Barbados on becoming a Republic, officially cutting ties with the British Monarchy and casting off its colonial past.
A statement from the Peoples National Party noted that the move by the Mottley Government, "comes 55 years after the country gained independence from Britain. The nation of Barbados, a democracy of about 300,000 people, announced in September 2020 that it would remove Queen Elizabeth as head of state.
Prime Minister Mia Mottley in her announcement, expressed that Barbadians want a Barbadian head of state and that the move represents the “ultimate statement of confidence in who we are and what we are capable of achieving”.
“Prime Minister Mia Mottley and her government have demonstrated what is possible when vision and plans become effective action. The Leader of the Opposition said
To the people of Barbados, I extend my heartiest congratulations for completing this outstanding element of your national independence. Special congratulations to Dame Sandra Mason who was sworn in as the country’s first President, thereby becoming the Head of State of Barbados.”
The PNP has also stated that it will take steps to replace the British Monarch with a Jamaican as Head of State when they are re-elected as the next Government of Jamaica. “We are committed to Jamaica achieving this critical step.
This opportunity for deeper national self-realization must be presented to the Jamaican people. We too can join Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Dominica and now Barbados on shedding this residual aspect of the colonial past”, said Golding.
In the meantime, Opposition Member of Parliament Mikael Phillips, who eleven months ago tabled a resolution to remove the Queen as the head of state and for Jamaica to become a republic, is pushing for the matter to be placed on the legislative agenda for the current parliamentary year.
The resolution, which was tabled on December 8, called for the process to be completed before Jamaica celebrates its 60th anniversary as an independent nation in August next year.
Phillips told Radio Jamaica "I would think that it is something that the government themselves would have an interest in, as we have been told by the Prime Minister himself.
So, it is something that I expect to see on the agenda, at least in the new year 2022 - at least by January - for us to at least start the debate," he said.