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‘Republic of Barbados’ by end of the year

‘Republic of Barbados’ by end of the year

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by NEVILLE CLARKE

Barbados NATION reporter

BRIDGETOWN – From March, Government will be putting steps in place to make Barbados a republic by year-end.

Prime Minister Owen Arthur made the disclosure last night while addressing a joint meeting of the Christ Church West and St Michael South branches of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) at Garrison Secondary School, Barbados. {{more}}

He said Attorney-General Mia Mottley would present a draft bill in Parliament in March to amend the Constitution.

“Thirty-eight years ago at Independence people were not confident in how secure we were in some of the symbols that reflect the Barbadian personality, and a lot was left to be done by future generations,” Arthur told cheering party members.

“These generations have to decide what it is they want to accept as the symbolic representation of the Barbados personality as represented by our head of state. The moment is coming this year.

“This BLP will move this country to a higher and mature plane of political development by having changes to our Constitution that embrace many of the proposals of the Henry Forde Constitutional Commission. Some of these proposals address fundamentally our standing as a nation before the family of nations as a country that is secure in its own identity, to have one of its own become its supreme head of state,” Arthur added.

The Prime Minister told his audience that as Barbados’ leader he would have fundamental problems swearing allegiance to a King Harry.

“Heaven forbid, but if Her Royal Majesty Queen Elizabeth were to die; if Prince Charles and if Prince William were to die, I would have it as a fundamental difficulty swearing allegiance to King Harry. I really would,” Arthur said.

Arthur also told his audience 2005 was a critical year in the development of Barbados.

He identified the coming on stream of the Caricom Single Market and Economy; addressing the gridlock on the country’s roads which affected productivity; and the hosting of World Cup as some of the major challenges facing his administration.

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