Barbados cut its constitutional ties with the British monarchy in the past few hours, becoming the youngest republic in the world, although some Barbadians see that historic moment only as a first step.
We are very happy because we will stop having the Queen of England as our head of state, but we see this event as the beginning of the construction of a project, the secretary of the Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration, David Denny, declared.
According to the well-known Barbadian trade unionist and activist, the organization under his charge will begin to campaign from the first day of the proclamation of the parliamentary republic to establish a system of government in which voters have the right to vote for the president of the country. They will also demand a higher level of popular participation in the decision-making process through electoral assemblies and communities.
Work to be done on democratization
For Denny it is also essential that work is done on the democratization of public and private companies so that the working class can benefit from the profits of these types of corporations.
In his opinion, the new status that Barbados acquired from the first minute of this past Tuesday will not cause real changes in the economic program or in the commercial and financial relations that the Caribbean island maintains with the United States, Europe or the former British metropolis.
Everything will continue as before, and that is why we say that this is only the beginning in the construction of a republic, because economic changes are needed that translate into better conditions for the people, he remarked.
Others follow suit
At the international level, Denny believes, however, that the step Barbados will take will have an international impact, as he expects neighboring islands such as Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Grenada, Saint Vincent, and the Grenadines, and Antigua and Barbuda, which still have Queen Elizabeth II of England as their head of state, also follow the example and also become republics.
Denny also did not hide his annoyance with the presence at the ceremony of Prince Charles, heir to the British Crown, at the ceremony on Tuesday in Bridgetown.
For us it is an insult to the people of Barbados to have as a guest a representative of the royal family who benefited from slavery and the exploitation of the African community, he said.
According to the office of the Prince of Wales, Carlos is already on the Caribbean island and will deliver a speech highlighting the countless links between the peoples of the two countries.
At the ceremony, attorney Sandra Mason, who serves as the governor-general and highest representative of Queen Elizabeth II in Barbados, will be sworn in as the island’s first president by Prime Minister Mia Mottley.