KINGSTON, Jamaica, Monday February 25, 2013 – Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller says Jamaica is committed to replacing Britain’s Queen Elizabeth as head of state and would not be deterred by recent statements made an a British politician.
“We have got to a stage and a level of our country’s development and independence, having celebrated 50 years of Independence, it is with Jamaicans to take the decision, and the changing times call for changes,” Prime Minister Simpson Miller told the Jamaica Observer newspaper, arguing that she remained the Queen’s biggest fan.
“The Queen is a wonderful, beautiful lady. I have every love and respect for her and I think I am her number one fan, but the decision to replace her lies with us here in Jamaica,” she added.
The ruling People’s National Party (PNP) has already said that it wants Jamaica to adopt a republican status, but Shaun Bailey, special advisor to Britain’s Prime Minister David Cameron, urged Jamaica to tread cautiously in its mission to abolish The Queen as Jamaica’s head of state.
Bailey, who ran unsuccessfully for a parliamentary seat in Britain’s 2007 general election, said that such a move could have negative, far-reaching consequences Jamaica.
“I would say Jamaica should be careful about doing that (disbanding The Queen),” Bailey said, adding “it gives Jamaica access to a broader world market, a broader world community, and Jamaica is a small place that could be powerful, but not on its own.
“It needs to be in that. The reason that Britain keeps it going from its side is that Britain can see the benefit in being in that community and I would argue that Jamaica would feel the benefits of it as well,” Bailey added.
But Prime Minister Simpson Miller told the newspaper there ought to be a paradigm shift in Jamaica’s political ideals, and maintained that the time had elapsed for Jamaica to remain cloaked in The Queen’s colonial garments. (CMC) Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. (View sample)