Barbados citizenship still a whimsical process where luck and who you know count more than law

by a Bajan Citizen

I am a dual citizen (my parents were both Bajan born and raised) and have been trying to register my daughter as a dual citizen in order to make it easier for her to go to University in Barbados, a desire she has had since a small child. I started the process in 2008 – I continue to go to Immigration every few months and they keep putting me off.

In 2010, after discovering that they lost the original application, I successfully resubmitted the information and still do not have any idea of a resolution. I was told at first that all was fine, but whispers are in the air that now it seems that there are some changes coming to the laws that may affect this. I was also told that there are thousands of “Citizenship by Registration” cases that this will affect – and all of these pending applications are in limbo.

It seems to be a dirty little secret that Government is holding – maybe a party issue that will be raised in the next election? The people have a right to know! And for me, the laws of 2008 are what my particular application should be judged against. Why hold onto applications while you decided if you are going to change the law?

Barbados Free Press, please post this issue so that others like me can have some idea of what is going on – maybe a reader has some insight. My Bajan bloodline is one that my daughter and I respect with pride. It represents a legacy of my ancestors is one that I hope will not end with me (though she does plan to move back one day to have her first child to refresh our Bajan roots-by-law).

Immigration Reform: Another aborted DLP promise

Back in October 2009, then Prime Minister David Thompson placed before Parliament and the nation a paper “A Comprehensive Review of Immigration Policy and Proposals for Legislative Reform”. Thompson revealed that many immigration cases hadn’t been touched in 12 years and that the whole process was “whimsical” and dependent not upon law or rules, but upon the discretion of government employees.

Prime Minister Thompson said that the issue was “urgent”.

And in typical government fashion on this rock that was the last that was heard of that.

We must not forget though that the chaos of our immigration system was built by the Barbados Labour Party under Owen Arthur. The DLP merely carried on the fine tradition started by King Arthur.


Filed under Barbados, Immigration

10 responses to “Barbados citizenship still a whimsical process where luck and who you know count more than law

  1. Jocelyn Hunte

    I am a Venezuelan citizen resident in Barbados since 1950, married to a Barbadian since 1960, have four Bajan born children and seven out of our eight grandchildren are also Bajan born, and I have tried to get Barbados citizenship only to be told that ALL the documents I presented were ‘mislaid’…………..I haven’t bothered to do anything more.

  2. 212

    wuh you torking bowt? citizenship?? EVERYTING bowt heh, not jess citizenship, EVERYTING depends on luck and who you know and not the Law. Iz jess de way tings iz be.

  3. berchel

    Like just about every system in Barbados – law courts etczetc. Broken and apparently untouchable

  4. Red Lake Lassie

    Can’t we get one thing right? With our low birth rate we must have immigratiion but it should be regulated so we get the best people. Immigration to Barbados is not a right it is a privilege. Kill Caricom. What good does it do us?

  5. Annette Baker

    Fast becoming foreigners in our own country? Keep watching!


    Every thing for sale even what they dont own, Number 10 in the World in Fraud, This small Country

  7. victor

    If you pay enough you can get to be Bajan in a snap second.

    Red Lake, I agree; what is Caricom actually for? The idealistic concept that all would be one great Caribbean nation is just a joke. Nobody is allowed to come and go, work in each others’ countries anyway. Yet they sneak in and out, working away without documentation.

    Take a lesson from the EU! Collapso time. Who ever dreamed Greece and Germany were on a par? Only the Greeks who saw a tantalising vision of freebies which they hauled in big time and the Germans who thought they could dominate Europe, yet again. Well, it’s not working in Europe or the Caribbean.

    It is idealistic folly to assume that individual nations with their different cultures could ever merge when there is such a huge disparity of wealth and potential amongst them In certain spheres it does work, such as defence, that gets pens to paper big time! But otherwise, it looks to me as if it is each for his own and so shall it remain.

    The only ones who profit from this concept are the bureaucrats who are doing very well, thank you, living the life of Riley at the public’s expense.

  8. robert ross

    @ Victor

    I agree (as usual) with your general comments including the assessment of caricom. However, my personal experience is that caricom nationals may and do take employment once the paperwork is complete and, indeed, before it is complete for limited periods.

  9. 149

    Met beautiful girl selling wine at Trident Wines from Belize. She tells me immagration officer did her a favor so she can work in Barbados. Please only alow beautiful girls in, ugly girls not welcome.

  10. Jay

    I also agree with Red Lake.Trying to sell an economic model of “We’re all in or We’ll all fail together” doesn’t seem like an economy Barbados should model after.There is also no real economic exporting engine within the Caribbean that could allow sustainable growth for all Caribbean countries.

    I still think CSME is a great idea but the current iteration of it in Barbados law should exclude all of those except whom have attained a degree for 2 or 4 years in a critical sector that Barbados needs workers where the list could be updated from time to time dependent on what is needed to get the economic engine going.This is exactly what Australia does to ensure it gets only the highly skilled workers it requires.

    Citizenship is not a right when conferring to non-citizens it is the highest privilege a country can give but I’m seeing in too many Carib countries people are looking the other way with regards to the regulations and not understanding how important immigration is.Barbados honestly seems to be on the fence with how it enforces the law and that can send the wrong impression to both those who legitimately seek to enter the island and those who want to break the law as non-citizens.There has to be more balance with regards to this in the long run because Barbados as an island depends on it.