Letters to the Editor

This is why people fight for independence from colonialism

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

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Dear Editor,

I am always resisting the temptation to join the never-ending debate about why it's better to have remained under colonialism. But when I see what is happening in the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI), I feel aggrieved and I have to speak out.

According to an article in the September 23, 2018 edition of the Sunday Observer, the premier, who is also the finance minister, is complaining bitterly that she and her elected ministers are being frustrated in their efforts to bring progress to the TCI by the intransigence of the British governor, his deputy, and the attorney general there.

In the TCI, which is under British rule, the political arrangement is that the governor, the deputy and the attorney general who are appointed from London make up the Cabinet with the elected members.

It doesn't stop there. Those three have to agree with any government programmes proposed by the elected ministers, including the premier. Indeed, even if one of them disagrees, the programme cannot go forward for implementation. Each of the British appointees has complete veto power! Right now they can hardly get anything done because of these three.

Does that make sense? Why allow democratic elections only to frustrate the will of the people through their elected representatives in the Cabinet? The governor, deputy governor and attorney general are not elected by the people; they are imposed by Britain.

Over the years, the people of Puerto Rico have been fighting for full independence from the United States. My view has always been that they would be better off with statehood. But when you see what is happening in the TCI, one can't help but understand why people fight for their independence.

Britain needs to let go of the TCI or allow democracy to prevail.

Harold A Mottley


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