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An article in The Nation of May 29 entitled Time To Change Ministers’ Oath piqued my interest. The writer, Beverley J. Walrond, was annoyed that our ministers and others were still “taking the oath to the Queen, her heirs and successors”. She offered as an alternative the Jamaican solution, namely swearing allegiance to the people of Jamaica instead.
This hybrid solution makes no sense to me while, in each case, the country retains the British monarchy as Head of State. It seems a case of bad manners to swear allegiance to an entity other than one’s Head of State. What Jamaica has shown is ambivalence with regards to their status, the same as they show towards the Caribbean Court of Justice.
Oh, by the way, Malta, placed by Mrs Walrond in the same category as Jamaica, stopped pledging allegiance to the monarchy for very good reason – the country became a republic in 1974. That is in fact the obvious solution to the dilemma that confronts some of us. That point was made by Ian Archer in the Weekend Nation of June 1. There is no reason why our country, independent for 51 years, should continue to have a Head of State who is not Barbadian.
You mean, the Brits enslaved us, they colonised us, they set us free and we still hang on to their coat-tails? Who doesn’t think our Governor General would fit in nicely as President?
– Rudy Brome