The majority of locals across the four main islands of the territory do not want independence from Britain.
That was from a report arising out of a series of community meetings held to document residents’ opinion on what they want the future of the relationship between the BVI and the United Kingdom to become.
“I don’t recall even one person advocating for independence at this time. Many people were saying we need to prepare for that eventuality but I think constitutional advancement isn’t something that … will be necessary at this time,” said local attorney, Jamal Smith – a member of the Opposition Leader Andrew Fahie-led committees that organised the meetings.
The attorney told journalist on Monday that while residents are not eyeing constitutional advancement, they are interested in the BVI getting constitutional reform.
He said several residents wanted such constitutional reform to reflect ‘better governance’.
“What people want to see is a reformed system of governance that puts the proper checks and balances in place and ensures that we have better systems,” Smith added.
“Although all of that didn’t specifically relate to the relationship between the UK and the Overseas Territories, it was tied to it because of that trust that the people place in Her Majesty to act in our best behalf. And so, we got a lot of comments in relation to what people perceive as the current mismanagement or apparent dissatisfaction with the current leadership,” Smith explained.
He continued: “I suspect a constitutional reform must be something that the British government sees as important out of this report.”
The responses of residents in relation to what they want the future of the BVI/UK to be was submitted to the United Kingdom on Monday, September 3, as part of an inquiry being conducted by Britain.
The inquiry is assessing how effectively the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office manages its responsibilities towards the BVI and other OTs.
Persons were given until September 3 to submit responses for the inquiry but the UK recently extended that deadline to September 18.
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