The Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) has launched an exhibition dubbed ‘Cornerstone of Nation’, to commemorate its 78th anniversary this year.
The exhibition, which is being held at Speedbird House on Independence Square, will run for two weeks displaying BLP memorabilia, such as the chair of Sir Grantley Adams, pictures of former party leaders and prime ministers such as Tom Adams, Harold Bernard “Bree” St John and Owen Arthur.
Addressing the event, party leader Mia Mottley criticized those who she said sought to rewrite history and downplay the contributions made by the party throughout the island’s 50 years of independence.
“It is regrettable that over the course of the past few weeks in particular, persons have sought to rewrite history and it’s not fair to Barbadians here, and in particular to those Barbadians who are yet unborn, and I speak regrettably to those who use artistic licence for the celebration of independence on the eve of a political season to seek to rewrite persons like the Right Excellent Sir Grantley Adams out of the history of this country or cast him in a light as a tool of the plantocracy; such that anyone living today whose memory goes back to the days of Sir Grantley will be horrified that any Barbadian will commit such an act,” said Mottley.
She explained that the purpose of the exhibition was to reveal the “total history” of Barbados, as the BLP, which has existed since 1938 has played a pivotal role in the development of the country.
“This is not a race about who has how many years in Government, the Queen Elizabeth Hospital was planned by the Barbados Labour Party. It was executed on its opening rather by the Democratic Labour Party. There are projects which were started by the Democratic Labour Party like the airport that the Barbados Labour Party completed.”
She stressed that it was necessary for all to work together as a single entity, stating: “This country needs healing and to heal . . . and to heal as a whole body does, we must acknowledge with truth and sincerity the role that each of us play in the building out of this nation.”
Mottley also argued that the contributions and achievements of the BLP should be recognized alongside the 50th anniversary celebrations.