GOVERNMENT Senators were officially sworn in by Her Excellency Dame Sandra Mason at her official residence at Government House yesterday morning.
Attended by Prime Minister the Hon. Mia Mottley and senior members of her Cabinet, the ceremony though a small cry from the larger public swearing-in of Ministers and parliamentary secretaries on Sunday, was witnessed by friends and family during an intimate gathering.
Dame Sandra, while congratulating the group which features a balance of youth and experience said, “You swore true allegiance to Her Majesty the Queen but of course you have a faithful job to the country of Barbados.”
The Governor General wished them the best and noted that they would faithfully equip themselves of their role and function in the Senate.
However it was evident that two senators-designate Rawdon Adams and Kay McConney were absent.
Attorney-General and Minister of Legal Affairs Dale Marshall while speaking to the media after the ceremony explained that come Tuesday during the first sitting of Parliament, an amendment to the Constitution must be made for them to be appointed.
“The reason for this is because our 1966 Constitution sets out that in order to qualify for appointment, a person must ordinarily be resident in Barbados for 12 months prior to the appointment. In the case of Mr. Adams, well-known of significant Barbadian pedigree, the son of Tom Adams (Barbados’ second Prime Minister), he has been resident in Barbados, having relocated here almost 12 months ago.”
“Kay McConney also a distinguished Barbadian currently resident in Canada, you may know that Miss McConney was our Consul General in Canada at one point in time. So she now has to resume residence in Barbados. This therefore means that we will have to make a Constitutional amendment so as to provide that in order to be appointed to be a Senator, you have to be a citizen which we think is significantly more appropriate than being ordinarily resident.”
Offering the rationale behind the amendment, the Attorney General said, “We exist in a very global community, and Barbadians have served with great distinction across the Diaspora and other parts of the world and therefore we think that it is important for us to make this amendment, so as to be able to allow for all voices to contend and all individuals who have a contribution to make to Barbados to do so.”