Anguilla Prepares For Independence – Tries To Avoid The Mistakes Of Barbados


“Anguilla is one of Britain’s last remaining colonies. Colonialism is new to Anguilla. In the period prior to Slave Emancipation in 1834, Anguilla was not officially treated as a British colony. Not that we were repudiated. We were simply ignored and left to rot by ourselves. With the coming of Emancipation, the British realized it was time to impose a form of administration on Anguilla. This was necessary if the Slave Registration and subsequent Abolition and Apprenticeship Acts were to be properly implemented…” … from Corruption-free Anguilla Colonialism 1

The British have no interest in laying down strict dictates for the sake of laying down strict dictates. They have to protect their interests. We in Anguilla have our own interests. They do not relate to those of Britain. We have to gird up our loins and prepare to protect our interests.

Confrontation is inevitable. Are we getting ready to meet the FCO boys when they arrive in Anguilla in July for negotiations? As with most conflicts that are not fratricidal in nature, the outcome is usually to the benefit of all concerned. But, only if we are properly prepared!

… from Corruption-free Anguilla Colonialism 2

Our friend Don Mitchell (CBE QC) at Corruption-free Anguilla blog has concerns about corruption in his country and about how things will go when Anguilla becomes an independent nation. His main theme seems to be that Anguilla should make itself ready to negotiate with the British, but also to become independent. To have the rules and systems in place so there isn’t a free-for-all by corrupted interests.

There have been many tides go out of Bridgetown harbour since Barbados became independent. At the time, did we negotiate as best as we could have?

I know the answer about whether we placed the rules and systems in place to prevent a free-for-all by corrupted interests!


Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Politics & Corruption

28 responses to “Anguilla Prepares For Independence – Tries To Avoid The Mistakes Of Barbados

  1. laughing barbadian

    There have been many tides go out of Bridgetown harbour since Barbados became independent……………………………………………………………………………….pray tell me how r we independent when the Queen of England is the head of state of barbados represented here by our Governer general?????? and by the way the governer general is also appointed by the queen ??????just wondering

  2. BFP

    “Independent” doesn’t have to mean a republic.

    We don’t trust our political elites enough to give them the free reign of a republic without rules.

    Do you?

  3. True Native

    BFP: TWICE I have just tried to post a comment and it has disappeared. Not even “awaiting moderation”. Could you please explain?

  4. J. Payne

    Anguilla was already rid of Brititan…. They reverted back… Anyone remember the merged territory of Saint Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla ????

  5. J. Payne

    True Native:

    I noticed sometimes my comments will disappear sometimes if I try to snip someone elses text in a not so friendly way that conflicts with their web
    sever. Like sometimes if I do the backslash key to say where that person’s quote begins and ends. I think the “”servers think I’m injecting HTML or PHP and it just eats the whole message post.

  6. J. Payne

    I hope Anguilla has better luck wid Indepedence dis time….. Are Bajans at least invited to de Party??? lol

  7. Rule Brittania

    Have any of you seen Anguilla, physically?

    It’s a sandbar – a glorified sandbar,
    soon to be an “independent” sandbar!
    They’re not even geophysically independent of nearby St.Maarten, with whom they share the same seamount.
    I wish them luck.

    Will they issue their own currency?
    – the Sand Dollar?
    Will they drill for oil and gas?
    How about agriculture? Are they suddenly now going to supply all their own eats?

    What were they thinking?
    Were they thinking?
    Or is this more idealism and insular nationalism?

    Barbados is considerably larger, considerably higher in elevation(attracting more rainfall), considerably more “important” to trade,etc., gets FAR more rainfall(not that we get a lot) – and we’re not exactly a shining example of post-Colonial Independence.

    I wish Anguilla the best of British luck.
    If they could get along with Whitey, they would do best to remain sewn into the hem of Britain’s dress and catch a cool ride.
    Or maybe apply to be a satellite of France(who runs Guadeloupe and Martinique as dept.s of France.

    I seriously wish Anguilla luck, coz God knows they’re going to need every little drop of that commodity they can get their hands on.

    Someone please list Anguilla’s physical assets,
    upon which to base independence
    – other than sea sand sun fun and…. well you know the rest.

  8. Brabsoda

    Laughing Barbadian,
    As far as I know the Govenor General is recommended by the Prime Minister of Barbados and the Oueen has never declined this recommendation. She can only appoint who the Prime Minister chooses.

  9. Bajanboy

    I for one would like Barbados to join the EU. Hopefully, almost 350 years of rule by Great Britain would allow us to do that. At the very least, we should reapply to become a colony. Can’t be any worse than the corrupt system we currently have and the bunch of yardfowls we have running things (both in and out of power) and I would get to travel Europe without the need for a visa.

  10. Never Happen.

    I agree with Bajanboy, in that we should seek to re-align/re-colonize ourselves with a Greater Power (much as we seek God).
    If we go his suggested European route, it won’t be up to Britain to accept us or not,
    coz we’ll be dealing with Brussels, not London.

    We might then also re-align our currency with the Euro, seemingly a stronger currency, at least for now. Maybe the Euro will be our currency, just like how it is in M’que and Guadeloupe.

    There is much to be said for this idea or re-colonization!
    Along that same vein, an ‘easier’ scenario for many might be an Eastern Caribbean State comprising T&T, Barbados, Grenada,Grenadines,St.Vincent,St.Lucia
    (occupying one contiguous,regional area with no-one else in between us)
    – given Trini money in our islands, and truly free flow of people,
    this could be a worthwhile venture for all.

    But that would entail bravery,
    and ridding ourselves of the insularity we tooo like!
    Far too idealistic: forget the whole thing.

  11. True Native

    J. Payne: Thanks for that tip, mate.

  12. Thistle

    Never Happen/Bajanboy:

    “We should seek to realign/re-colonize ourselves with a Greater Power (much as we seek God)”
    Wunna all REAL brave, you hear? A Greater Power? And you talking ’bout Brussels/Belgium/Europe? WHITE rulers??? Don’t make me laugh! You stepping ‘pun real corns and mashing up the pyche in this part of the world! You better hope Commission don’t read this!

  13. Anonymous

    J. Payne: Thanks for the tip. I was hoping you were right, but I’ve tried several times since then (True Native) and each and every time it disappears! True Native get bounce off.

  14. J. Payne

    Rule Brittania? Yuh not for real r u? lol.

    Everybody knows all islands in the Eastern Caribbean accept the French Isles, The Dutch Isles, Barbados, T&T, the US colonies, the British Virgin Islands, and the Turks and Caicos islands everyone else is on the Eastern Caribbean dollar. (Anguilla included.)

    Who We Are , What We Do:

    The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank was established in October 1983. It is the Monetary Authority for a group of eight island economies namely – Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent and the Grenadines.”

    England does nothing for their colonies accept provide stability in this day and age…. All of Britain’s Caribbean territories either have their own currency, the EC$ or else the US$.

    Bermuda has it’s own money. (BM$1=US$1)
    (Not really in the Caribbean but is geo-politically- a Caribbean state.)

    Cayman Islands has it’s own money. (KY$1=US$1)
    Montserrat is on the EC$
    Anguilla is on the EC$

    The Turks and Caicos Islands use the US$
    and the British Virgin Islands use the US$

    None use the pound as you seem to insinuate… All have balanced budgets and don’t receive aid from the UK(Accept for Monserrat because of the volcano. And briefly Cayman Islands due to Hurricane Ivan.) All bearly charge their citizens much tax. etc. etc. etc.

  15. J. Payne

    I think— if Britain had allowed their Caribbean states to have more political independence during the 1950’s (as they do now) many probably wouldn’t have gone independent… Which would have been BAD for the USA. They wouldn’t have as much power in this hesmisphere as they do now because anything the USA wanted to do– to the Caribbean— would have to be vetted through Britain first……. None of this Shipriders stuff getting crammed down the Caribbean’s throat etc….

    But take the example of Bermuda. The Bermuda-UK relationship isn’t much more different than that of Barbados-UK today.

    *Bermuda has it’s own parliament to decide local policy. *So does Barbados.

    *Bermuda has their own currency.
    *So does Barbados

    *Even though Bermuda is a colony of Britain, British people need the approval of the Bermudian government to move/work there….. (This is not the case between the French/Dutch Antillies and their mother country.)
    *Barbados is independent and Brits. still need permission.

    *Britain pays for Bermuda’s national defence.
    *Barbados has to pay for it’s own national defence.

    *Britain negotiates foreign policy on behalf of Bermuda.
    *Barbados negotiates foreign policy on it’s own behalf.

    * Bermuda has a Premier as Head of Government.
    *Barbados had a Premier and shited it to Prime Minister.
    (big whooop)

    *Bermuda has a Governor as representative to the Queen.
    *Barbados had a Governor and shited it to a “Governor-General.”
    (another big whooop)

    *Bermuda has their own stock Exchange.
    * So does Barbados.

    *Bermuda is considered first world.
    *hmmm….. I not touching that one I have meh pride nah!!!

    If— the British West Indies were to revet back to Britain that would have benefits to Britain now in the EU. For one voting rights in the EU are decided partically by population size. Hence why France with a population of ~ 62 million and Germany ~80 million have the lion share of EU power and influence. The UK has a population of 60 million….. The British West Indies are about 6-7 million which would be enough to propell Britain back ahead of France…. (That would be good for British power and influcence inside the EU.)

    Not much in the Caribbean politically would change in terms of politics. But economically things would probably change.

    Another Pro. currently Britain has isolated their territories from demands of the EU. So in actuality all these requirements that the EU giving the independent Caribbean now… Would be null and void if the Caribbean was still politically involved with Britain. I’m convinced all dat independence did was switch from having the UK approve everything the Caribbean want to do. To asking the USA.

  16. J. Payne

    U know there’s actually a website proposing Guyana should become a part of the USA????

    For CARICOM personally I still like the idea of Barbadian Author Dr. Trevor A. Carmichael in the book ”Passport to the Heart: Reflections on Canada Caribbean Relations”. (2001.) Ian Randle Publishers, Kingston 6, Jamaica. ISBN 976-637-028-1 [ The book’s Forward passage], [ synopsis]

    I think Barbados is too intertwined in this hemisphere to ever fully go back to Britain. At this point we even have different electrical outlets then the UK, as well as telephone jacks, and television signal standards then Britain. I think Canada could be another attractive alternative?

    The Barbadian author spoke about the proposals originating in the British West Indies about the various islands joining Canada as a province. (Including Barbados in 1884, and then again in 1960 where various members of Government were polled about it in the Barbados Advocate newspaper.) It also talks about the intatives by Canada to have the Caribbean join up with them in order to create an almost CARICOM-Canada single market space that would temper some of the United State’s power and influence in this hemisphere. It talks about the United States pressuring the newly independent states to join their OAS (In addition to the Commonwealth.) And in turn it was the Caribbean that pressured Canada to join the OAS since both of them were already in the Commonwealth.

    The book also goes into detail how the Canadian banks and Insurance companies replaced all British companies in the Caribbean- slowly—- but surely, to where we are now where most companies in the Caribbean today are or were Canadian owned.

    RBTT was Royal Bank of Canada in T&T
    Life of Barbados was ManuLife
    FirstCaribbean today is CIBC
    Then we have Scotia Bank and RBC still.

    Barclays left and went back to the UK.

    Anyway in the book Canada outlined what having a Caribbean province would add (page 8 of that book).
    . . .
    The report entitled ‘Confidential memorandum Upon the Subject of the Annexation of the West India Islands to the Dominion of Canada’ concluded that annexation would be advantageous but cited the five advantages of union as follows:

    1. It would give to Canada an increase of territory amounting to 113,000 square miles, and of population 2,300,000 thus adding considerable to the importance and influence of the Dominion.

    2. The tropical products available in the new territory would make the Domininion more self-contained and would give us practically all the advantages of a diversity of climate and products which are afforded to that great Republic by the southern portion of the United States.

    3. The importance of sea power would become so obvious under new conditions as to leave little room for argument to the contrary.

    4. Confederation would afford a broader market to our manufacturers and prooducers which must result in a very large development of trade, as we produce precisely what they require, and vice versa.

    . . .
    For T&T and Jamaica those two states– say they want to join NAFTA (The federal government of Canada is a member.) So in an agreement wid Canada they can trade in NAFTA as they want since the central government of Canada is already a member. The other states in CARICOM which all seem to think the idea of NAFTA is too scary can sit-back and relax. because they didn’t sign on to NAFTA themselves but when they ready they can make use of it via the central govenrment of Canada.

    The government structure of Canada would be appealing. Canada is made up of former separate colonies. As such each province in Canada has its own parliament. Meaning the Caribbean countries would be able to keep the parliaments they have.

    Provinces in Canada all have a flag too– meaning countries in the Caribbean would get to keep their flags.

    Canada is a manageable size. Every Caribbean country worries they would be overrun by a larger country. Canada only has only 30 million people(compared to the United States which has 300 million.)
    CARICOM has a population of about 15 million, with only 30 million people in Canada, that means there’s only—– about 2 Canadians for every person in CARICOM. And don’t forget many of those people in Canada are going to be West Indians too.

    Single Currency. No matter how you cut it CARICOM needs a single currency. Canada+CARICOM together owning a single currency would actually be a currency used in half of the countries in this hemisphere. It’s going to be a pretty strong currency even if it was allowed to float.

    Guyana is crying out that development isn’t reaching dey- fast enough. Guyana as a part of CARICOM would be the only part of Canada in South America meaning most Canadians that want to trade with South America would probably setup shop in Guyana. Can you think of a better way to make Guyana a bridge in the Americas.

    Haiti…. Haiti is largely French speaking and no matter what CARICOM’s leaders say. They really— don’t know what to make of HAITI. However. Canada is a French/English country too meaning a joint CARICOM-Canada single market is going to be strong because Haitians can speak their native French tongue with nationals of Quebece meanwhile the other English speaking parts of CARICOM would get along nicely with the other english speaking parts of Canada.

    Canada is the LAST country not to have their own space industry infrastructure. Again since Guyana is VERY close to the Equator it wouldn’t be unreasonable to see Canada possibly setup a space shuttle base in Guyana if they want…. claims they want the Americans to build another one in Guyana. Canada would be more likely to build one. Countries like to use the earth’s fastest rotation at the Equator as a way to use less fuel when launching space shuttles.

    Theres much Canada could provide to CARICOM and theres much CARICOM can provide to Canada in an affilation I think.

  17. laughing barbadian

    yes bradsoda he is recommended by the prime minister of barbados and while the queen has never refused or is expexted too she can do so albiet it would be unusual

  18. J. Payne

    To Thistle…

    What’s too lose? We already commit to tourism. Basically pampering people from these countries to come to Barbados and spend their money….

  19. Has anybody stopped to wonder why it is that Guadeloupe, Martinique and French Guiana have remained a part of France? There was a strong move for independence back in the 60s and 70s which was ruthlessly suppressed by imported French “flics” with their lead weighted capes.

    I knew Guadeloupe natives who were determined to prevail over French domination. What happened? Did they have a change of heart, or was the independence movement stifled in its crib?

    One contributor to this post says the French may freely emigrate to the French Antilles. This surprises me for I know that emigration to New Caledonia in the Pacific is rigidly controlled. I had thought the same applied in Guadeloupe, Martinique, St Barts, French St. Martin, French Guiane etc., similar to the British restrictions over Bermuda.

    Do the inhabitants of the French islands, who are very much Caribbean people (black) feel they are better off being a weird adjunct of the EU.?

    Do they know something we don’t? They very likely consider us idiots for opting for orphan status rather than be part of a flourishing EU.
    Now all the orphan islands are banding together to form CSME, which can never be a global contender, merely an orphanage, seeking charity from metropolitan countries.

    The Dutch islands are in much the same boat except that they had the good sense to realise way back they would be better off under the umbrella of the Netherlands and European Union, than to struggle for independence to keep some power-hungry politicians’ egos inflated.

    Independence is an expensive fiction. Not worth it.

  20. Thistle

    Naive: For your interest I have a little anecdote which relates to why the people of Martinique and Guadeloupe opted to remain under French rule. It was told to me by a Martiniquan University Professor and I have no idea if it’s true or just a fable. Apparently, there was a strong political activist movement in the two islands for independence with the proviso that all French whites should leave the islands. That indomitable figure, De Gaulle, paid a visit to sort it out. He often wore a bush jacket with large pockets. He told the activists, who wanted independence that in his right hand pocket he had a document which, if they signed, would rule out independence, and in his left hand pocket he had a document which, if signed, would give them independence. BUT – if they gained independence every single black Martiniquan/Guadeloupan living in France would be deported. Apparently the document from the right hand pocket was signed. Martinique and Guadeloupe remain departments of France. True or false? Don’t ask me!

  21. Thistle- The Algerians were faced with the same sort of bullying tactics, but look at the difference!

    One of the worst bloodbaths of the 20th Century, because the Muslim Algerians had the courage of their convictions. And not a single Algerian Frenchman could be deported once they had legal status.

    I am sure the amusing tale you tell is apocryphal, but it is a sorry reflection of Caribbean divisiveness that we really know nothing about what political undercurrents there are in our brother islands these days. Does no one in Martinique tune in to BFP?

  22. J. Payne

    I heard— somewhere but I can’t remember where now– (but I sure wish I did) that they were nervous of what France did to Haiti. Basically how France made an example of out them. This source (from somewhere) From somewhere or something stated that France forcing Haiti– to pay reparations to France– for overthrowing their government was supposedly the deterant to their other colonies doing the same. The colonies didn’t want to end up impoverished by those reparation payments so they “stayed in line” so as to not bring down the guantlet on their way of life.

    You must admit though, for a good few years it was nice to experience the independence thing. Just after the cold war, as a country you could get boat loads of money either from the commies or “the West” for nothing.

    I believe if we never experienced the independence feeling, we’d never actually know what it was like. Then each and everytime we had a disagreement with Britain or the EU we would have started wanting indepedence. The problem now is, the big countries today still call all the shots so– what used to be independence is no-more…….. This uni-polar world (as Russia calls it) instead of a multilateral system is no fun. It’s expensive!!! Also it brings about corruption because governments are now supposed to operate like companies. (And very many companies would be ranked as corrupt if they were actually government agencies.)

    If the big countries say you’re policies are out of line they will sanction you back into place, (Just look at the Barbados Vs. the USA/Canada/France over the “Tax Haven” debate) so in actuality nobody is really “independent” everyone is just buying time now-adays.

  23. J. Payne

    French Guiana today doesn’t have much global trade going on however, one thing they do have going for them is that France has their space shuttle launch pad in French Guiana (since it is close to Equator.) Now since France is soo big in the EU suddenly French Guiana is now the EU’s space shuttle launch location. Which is pretty nice for them it means if their people educate themselves in space sciences etc. They probably likely to be hired to work for the EU’s space agency in their country. Which in Barbados’ case would be no different than working for an offshore company that happens to be in outer space development.

  24. Anonymous

    Interesting discussion re. to be or not to be “independent” !! thank you,all.

    Nice to know that not everyone is pie-in-the-sky idealistic nationalist,
    a mindset that preoccupies far too many of our people infused with too much pride and not enough industry!

  25. Zulu

    Tom Clarke wrote the novel “Growing up stupid under the Union Jack”. I wonder what he would think now that we are growing up under the Broken Trident?
    Time for a sequel, Tommy boy.

  26. Jack

    “Growing up stupid-er,under the broken trident”
    might be appropriate, given the children who go thru the Independent Barbados School System for 12 yrs.or so, and still manage to slip thru the cracks!
    Not much of THAT used to happen under the Union Jack.

  27. Anonymous

    “Growing up stupid-er,under the broken trident”
    might be appropriate, given the children who go thru the Independent Barbados School System for 12 yrs.or so, and still manage to slip thru the cracks!
    Not much of THAT used to happen under the Union Jack.

  28. J. Payne

    Anyone see this article?
    Guyana at 41: struggling to fulfil the dream of independence
    Sat, 26 May 2007 13:24:00

    By Terrence Esseboom


    – Guyanese on May 26 celebrate 41 years of political independence from Britain amid concerns here that this multi-racial republic has failed to achieved the dream of nationhood envisaged by its founding fathers.

    One historian said while independence dreams continue to elude this Caribbean Community country “politically inspired nightmares” persist.

    Tota Mangar said 41 years after independence, the dream that the country’s founding leaders had for political stability, racial harmony, and building a just and free society remains elusive.

    “Unfortunately the stark reality is that today our nation cries out in shame as Guyana is still struggling to realise these desired goals.

    “In several aspects we are worse off now than then despite the best efforts by many,” Mangar said this week.

    For the University of Guyana (UG) historian, political stability and national unity are not on the national radar.

    “Post-1997 elections events, political and industrial actions, as well as an escalation of criminal activity are testimony to this,” Mangar said.

    He admitted that progress has been made on the social and economic fronts but points out that the nation is still wrapped in economic dependency on international financial agencies.

    Despite massive debt forgiveness by international financial groupings the foreign debt continues to stifle the country. This English-speaking country which is nestled in South America, also suffers from massive migration and consequential ‘brain drain’ and capital flight.

    Mangar challenged the racially divided population to “show a greater sense of purpose and maturity, and greater mutual respect, tolerance and understanding…if we are to survive as a nation.”

    Meanwhile, in a message to mark the independence anniversary, the main opposition People’s National Congress Reform (PNC/R) says all stakeholders must participate in decisions affecting national life if Guyana is to be politically successful, economically self sustaining and culturally assertive.

    The PNC/R challenged the Bharrat Jagdeo administration to “build a truly inclusive political culture in which all the stakeholders are allowed to play a meaningful role and which can create the enabling environment for the orderly development of the nation.”

    Guyana gained its independence form Britain on May 26, 1966, two years after the PNC and the United Force (UF) formed a coalition to oust the Dr Cheddi Jagan-led People’s Progressive Party (PPP) from power.

    The PPP was swept back into power in October 1992 and has won every poll convincingly since then.

    “It is the judgment of our party that these celebrations should also be the occasion for serious soul searching as to where this nation is today and what we must do if it is to survive as a cohesive, unified and prosperous country.

    “As a people, we must ask ourselves whether, after 41 years of independence, we have been successful in nation building and whether the economic plans and programmes, over the past 14 years, have helped to spread prosperity equitably throughout the nation and resolved our deep seated ethnic and social problems,” the main opposition said.

    The 730,000 population is spilt almost equally between Blacks and Indians and there has been longstanding tension between the two racial groups as they seek the levers of power here.

    The PNC/R said “our existing political culture cannot unlock the talent and genius with which this nation is endowed. We must look to a system of shared governance as a means of achieving that state of unity and prosperity which to date have sadly evaded us.”

    Meanwhile, the government has mounted a 41st independence anniversary exhibition under the theme “41 years of sovereignty” at the National Museum in the capital.

    It showcases literature, stamps and military medals, and is part of the Culture, Youth and Sports Ministry’s efforts to make historical information available to the public in a reader friendly fashion.

    “This would help us to appreciate our history a little bit better. From this exhibition we are hoping to take some of it to the other regions so that all can see and benefit…we want this information to reach as many as possible,” Minister Frank Anthony said.[-End]