Barbados is about to get freedom from the British monarchy and become the newest republic. Barbados, a legacy of brutal colonial past is a tourism-dependent Caribbean island.
Barbados will replace its head of state (Queen Elizabeth II and her current representative Governor General Sandra Mason) this week. An inaugural ceremony will be held in National Heroes’ Square in the capital of Bridgetown on Monday morning to officially declare Barbados a republic.
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Ceremonies will start on Monday evening and will end on Tuesday. The celebrations will include military parades, the new Barbados president’s inauguration with Prince Charles and a speech by the British throne heir who will focus on continued ties between the two countries. British Prince Charles’s office released an excerpt of his speech which said-
As your constitutional status changes, it was important to me that I should join you to reaffirm those things which do not change. For example, the close and trusted partnership between Barbados and the United Kingdom as vital members of the Commonwealth,
Barbados elected Mason to become its first president in October. Last year, Prime Minister Mia Mottley declared that the British colonial will leave Barbados completely.
One of the challenges that Barbados will face immediately after independence is unemployment. It has raised to 16% from 9%. COVID-19 is another problem that has to be tackled by the new government as the cases are on an increasing trend.
The wealth gap and the ability to own land is a major challenge that will be in front of any citizen in the republic of Barbados. Apart from these, the new era has already fueled a debate on Britain’s centuries of influence and slavery of more than 200 years (1834 – 1966). Barbados finally became independent in 1966.
Barbados is famous for its beaches and love of cricket and has a population of nearly 285,000.