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The Virgin islands February 2019 General Elections and Brexit

February 16th, 2019 | Tags: Brexit Virgin Islands Dickson C. Igwe elections 2019
Dickson C. Igwe. Photo: VINO/File
By Dickson C. Igwe

OK. As Election Day approaches this Virgin Islands Resident pleads with the voting and nonvoting public to exercise patience, civility, and cordiality, throughout the whole electoral process, leading to voting on February 25, 2019.

In a micro-community, a British Virgin Islands General Election- held every 48 months- can be compared to a colourful and vibrant festival. It is a unique and special affair that is at the core of VI governance.

Elections in the Virgin Islands are a fiesta and a carnival. Everyone is involved in the excitement and thrust, from the child riding a bicycle on the street, to the parents at home who are voting for polar opposite candidates, to the music and jousting of campaigns.

Now, the behaviours of a number of ‘’activists’’ – and most sides are guilty- is not part of Virgin Islands culture. Behaviours, such as damaging poster boards, and slanderous statements, should be stopped immediately.

A great man stated to this Old Boy the other day that after February 25 a tiny community will still have to live together, no matter who wins and who loses. That is a simple fact. 

Now BREXIT remains a great unspoken in the Overseas Territories.

Were these islands French or Dutch, Virgin Islanders could have voted whether or not to stay in the European Union. Dutch and French Islanders in the Caribbean are considered equal with Dutchmen and Frenchmen resident in the Netherlands and France.

However, as the recent controversy with whether or not Gibraltar an OT- allowed to vote on Brexit- is a colony shows, Brexit has pulled off the Emperor’s clothes.

The OTs have a lot of catching up to do before they reach the constitutional status of Dutch and French West Indians.

The fact is that after Brexit- if Brexit indeed happens- Virgin Islanders holding UK/ EU passports will no longer be citizens of Europe. Their status will diminish in international affairs. And Virgin Islanders were not given any say on whether or not they wanted to leave the European Union or stay in the Union.

Residents of Her Majesty’s Islands in the Sea were not given the choice- as Gibraltar was- whether to stay in Europe or leave.

Whether that is a fair is left for the Virgin Islander and Belonger to decide.

In any event, if Brexit does indeed happen, the UK for all intents and purposes may cease to exist in a decade.

Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales may decide to apply to join the EU and leave the Union.

Scotland and Northern Ireland are overwhelmingly ‘’Remain in Europe.’’ Wales is now clearly ‘’Remain in Europe.’’

Where will that leave the Overseas Territories?

Brexit, as of today February 15, 2019, is headed towards 4 possible endings:

One: a no deal Brexit which means hard Brexit- leaving Europe without any deal or agreement, which is unlikely, as the UK Parliament is unlikely to accept that ‘’disaster;’’ add a hard border with Ireland;

Two: a soft Brexit, which means the UK remains in the European Union’s Customs Union, which further means the UK will have to take the bitter syrup of following EU rules without any say in EU policymaking;

Three: a delayed Brexit – which appears very likely as UK Parliamentarians wake up to the madness that is Brexit;

Four: a peoples vote – a Second Referendum- whether or not to continue with Brexit: the most logical solution in a Brexit that defies logic;

The tragedy of the can of worms David Cameron opened up by offering the UK a referendum in 2016 on whether or not to stay in Europe, is the unleashing of hardened and implacable positions on Europe among UK Citizens; divisions that were always kept well covered in a boiling pot.

The referendum of 2016 simply pulled off the lid and allowed the pot to boil over.

The problem is that whatever position the UK, and UK leaders, take on Brexit, the matter will continue to cause tension, division, and disagreement, for decades to come.

Brexit may well be the Swan Song of the United Kingdom.

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2 Responses to “The Virgin islands February 2019 General Elections and Brexit”

  • cay (16/02/2019, 11:23) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    tell that to the four leaders
  • concerned citizen (21/02/2019, 12:07) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Thank you Mr. Igwe.
    It is enlightening issues such as this one that our people should be engaged in conversations about; rather than many of the non-insightful and emotionally driven ones that often ignite divisions among us.

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