A day at Parliament

Mia Mottley explains an area of Barbados’ history to these students.
Mia Mottley explains an area of Barbados’ history to these students.

Thirty-nine students from class four of the St. Matthew’s Primary School, Hothersal Turning, St. Michael, were given informal instructions on this country’s civics and political history today.

And that instructor was parliamentary representative for the St. Michael North East constituency, Mia Mottley, in which the school is located.

Just after noon Mottley entered the House of Assembly and asked the students how many of them had visited the Chamber before.

A mere six children responded yes, but a majority told Mottley that they would like to be a politician.

Mottley advised them that if they wanted to become politicians they must have a love for their less privileged countrymen and read widely.

She told the class four students that every piece of legislation has to pass the House of Assembly, the Senate and gain the assent of the Governor General before it becomes law.

Highlighting the political maturity of the people of Barbados, Mottley said that while Americans were arguing there would be no taxation without representation, nearly a century later under the Charter of Barbados in 1651 Barbadians were calling for this right.

Mottley, accompanied by Facilities Co-ordinator of Parliament, David Best, took the students and the four teachers on a tour of the Museum of Parliament.

They were shown such historic figures as Samuel Jackman Prescod, the first black man to enter Parliament for the City, Errol Barrow, Sir Grantley Adams, the first black Speaker of the House of Assembly, Sir Kenmore Husbands, the jacket which Errol Barrow wore on the night Barbados became an independent nation and even the boots he wore when he was a pilot during World war 11. The students were also shown a picture of the lone surviving national hero, Sir Garfield Sobers.

The 39 class four students and their four teachers were later treated to lunch at Chefette Restaurant in Heroes Square by Mottley. (NC)

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