Parliament Buildings, Barbados

Today sees the island of Barbados celebrating its 52nd year of independence from Britain. After more than 300 years of unbroken colonial rule, November 30, 1966 was the day that the country’s now familiar black, blue and gold ensign supplanted that of the Union Jack. Since the 1990s, Barbados or ‘Bimshire’ as it is popularly known, has celebrated its ‘Spirit of Independence’ with a plethora of cultural activities and community events.

Barbados was, prior to being claimed by Britain in 1627, a territory of Portugal and then Spain. The original peoples, Arawak and Carib Amerindians, were been decimated by European disease and savagery. With its population of just under 300,000, the country is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, headed by the British monarch Queen Elizabeth. Errol Barrow was the nation’s first Prime Minister and is fondly and proudly remembered as ‘the Father of Independence and Social Transformation.

Barbados made history in May this year when it elected its first female Prime Minister, Mia Mottley.

Soca News wishes all Bajans and friends of Barbados a Happy Independence.