From The New Humanitarian Newsletter:
The Republic of Barbados
A historic week for Barbados: The Caribbean island became a republic on 30 November, removing Queen Elizabeth II as its official Head of State while celebrating 55 years of independence.
From now on, words such as crown and royal will no longer be used in official statements.
Declaration of the Republic
and Installation of the President of Barbados
The ceremony highlighted the role of women, from Prime Minister Mia Mottley; to the appointment of the first president, Dame Sandra Mason; to pop star Rihanna, who received the national hero honour.
Barbados was an early slave colony of England. The sugar plantations were run brutally, with an estimated 400,000 enslaved people forcibly shipped in from West Africa. Barbados served as an example of how the British would run other colonies in the region.
Also speaking at the ceremony was the heir to the British throne, Prince Charles. He acknowledged “the appalling atrocity which forever stains our history” during his speech at the celebrations.
Mottley has long advocated for reparations to be paid to countries affected by Europe’s slavery and colonial past.
The media has started a guessing game on which country will be next to follow in the footsteps of Barbados by renouncing the British queen.
Barbados to Remove Queen Elizabeth II
as its Head of State
The Week Magazine
The island nation of Barbados will remove Queen Elizabeth II as its head of state and move towards complete sovereignty from Britain, 54 years since attaining independence from the United Kingdom and becoming a Commonwealth Realm.
Governor General Dame Sandra Mason made the announcement in the Throne Speech.
“Having attained Independence over half a century ago, our country can be in no doubt about its capacity for self-governance. The time has come to fully leave our colonial past behind. \
“Barbadians want a Barbadian Head of State. This is the ultimate statement of confidence in who we are and what we are capable of achieving.
“Hence, Barbados will take the next logical step toward 12 full sovereignty and become a Republic by the time we celebrate our 55th Anniversary of Independence.”
The transition will occur within 14 months.
Barbados is one out of 16 Commonwealth Realms that have the Queen as their head of state—a position that is largely ceremonial.
While the Queen holds the highest position, she executes her powers on the advice of elected Crown ministers.
The last country to remove the Queen as its head of state was Mauritius in 1992.
Pakistan removed the Queen as its head of state after becoming a republic in 1956.
Several Caribbean countries opted for full sovereignty in the 1970s including Dominica, Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago.