UWI hosts big do for Sir Hilary
One senior Cabinet minister had condescendingly dubbed it a “coronation”, while revealing that he had no plans of attending it.
However, the position taken by the outspoken Business Minister Donville Inniss certainly did not stop Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and some other colleagues from attending yesterday’s installation of Sir Hilary Beckles as the eighth Vice Chancellor of the University of the West Indies (UWI).
Inniss had recently taken issue with the cost of the ceremony, which he estimated at a million Barbados dollars. However, the UWI quickly sought to clarify that the price tag for the installation was really in the order of $333, 000.
Despite Inniss’ stern warning that the UWI was sending the wrong message, particularly since its officials had been complaining of financial pressure on the back of the Government’s decision to ask Barbadian students attending the three UWI campuses to pay their own tuition costs, the Chairman of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Perry Christie and the leader of St Vincent and the Grenadines Dr Ralph Gonsalves were also in attendance, so too several top officials of the university, along with past and present students.
Here are some of the highlights of yesterday’s installation ceremony, which took place at UWI, Cave Hill.