BVI News

Governor wants territory to remain ‘British’

Governor Duncan

By Davion Smith, BVI News Online Staff

Though noting that the decision will ultimately be left up to the territory’s lawmakers, Governor John Duncan used his last time hosting the annual Queen’s Birthday Reception to promote continued ties between the British Virgin Islands (BVI) and the United Kingdom.

His comment comes as some leading members of the BVI community continue to push for independence or greater self-determination through an amendment to the Virgin Islands Constitution.

Premier Dr D Orlando Smith already declared his government’s intention to formally ask the United Kingdom to give local politicians more power, thereby reducing the power now enjoyed by the Governor.

Governor Duncan, during the reception Saturday evening, also spoke highly of Queen Elizabeth II.

“She is the most extraordinary person of our lifetime as our queen [and] as our monarch, and I hope that the BVI will continue to be guiding that link with Her Majesty and remain the British Virgin Islands,” he said. “That’s my personal view.”

Governor Duncan further said: “It (the decision) will be in the hands of our elected representatives, who, some of them here [at the reception], have views on that. But this is a special day for Her [Majesty].”

Territory-wide farewell

Governor Duncan, in the meantime, described the territory as one that is rich in talent.

“I think it’s a very special place. It’s been a great privilege to have been the Governor for three years. I am very confident that this territory will move forward and will meet the challenges that we all have to face.”

The governor, who is approaching his final weeks in office, promised to make a final trip around the territory this week.

“I shall be travelling to all our sister islands and offer farewell calls, and I very much look forward to that. Every island is distinct, every community is distinct,” added Governor Duncan, whose attire made him one of the standouts at the reception.

He was dressed in a kilt – a male garment in Scottish fashion that resembles a knee-length skirt.

Other officials who attended the reception include Premier Smith and his wife Lorna, Leader of the Opposition Andrew Fahie, Commissioner of Police Michael Matthews, and Director of Public Prosecutions Kim Hollis.

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