Governor General sworn inSir Elliott Fitzroy Belgrave, Barbados’ seventh Governor General with Lady Belgrave. (Nigel Browne)
By Gercine Carter | Fri, June 01, 2012 - 9:04 PM
A HUMBLE MAN from deep in the north of rural Barbados shed a tear yesterday as he was installed in the highest office in the land.
Sir Elliott Fitzroy Belgrave, Barbados’ seventh Governor General, told the Senate Chamber he felt somewhat lonely on this occasion, as he regaled the audience with tales about the sacrifices of his loving parents and seven siblings, none of whom are alive today.
In a voice cracking with emotion, the 81-year-old lawyer, prosecutor and former High Court judge, said: “Secondary education was a precious gift that my father was able to bestow on me, because in those days it was not free, and not everyone could afford this luxury. My father would become very excited when I did well at school, and would show my term report to everyone in Boscobel.”
Adding that he owed his deepest debt of gratitude to his parents Albert and Dewsbury Adora Belgrave, “humble and decent hard-working Barbadians” who did their best with limited resources to raise five girls and three boys, Sir Elliott said he was however comforted, strengthened and fortified by the presence of his dear wife Loretta, daughter Susan Lorraine and two grandchildren.
Another major source of his pride, he told the packed Senate of 250-odd well-wishers, was Barbados itself, which he described as “a land of tolerance, respect and racial harmony, where everyone, irrespective of their humble origins, creed or class, has an opportunity to develop their true potential.
“My elevation to this high office is proof that this statement is no wanton boast. As Nelson Mandela, among others, has said: it is not where one starts that matters but where one finishes,” Sir Elliott told the audience that included Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, Chief Justice Marston Gibson, Members of Parliament (MPs), Senators and members of the diplomatic corps.
Full story in tomorrow’s Saturday Sun
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