The seven outstanding statesmen who served Barbados as leaders of the nation were honoured last evening in A Tribute To Prime Ministers ceremony.
At the historical event held in National Heroes Square on National Heroes Day, a mirror image of the Father Of Independence Errol Walton Barrow was unveiled just a short distance away from where his statue that stands in Independence Square.
It was announced that the portrait of a smiling Barrow, looking sharp in a blue suit, was painted by prominent artist Wayne Branch who was himself present for the occasion. Barrow’s portrait, the first to be displayed, is to be followed by the unveiling of paintings of the other Prime Ministers in coming months.
Yesterday’s captivating and well-executed event, produced by the National Cultural Foundation and lasting for about three hours, highlighted the contributions of former national leaders Barrow, Tom Adams, Sir Harold St John, Sir Lloyd Sandiford, Owen Arthur, David Thompson and current Prime Minister Freundel Stuart.
With Governor General Sir Elliott Belgrave, Prime Minister Stuart, Chief Justice Sir Marston Gibson and Opposition Leader Mia Mottley, among other dignitaries, in attendance, the tribute was brought to life with cultural and classical presentations delivered by prominent local artistes, the Royal Barbados Police Force Band and the National Youth Orchestra.
Delivering the feature address, Senate President Kerryann Ifill said the event was another landmark for Barbados. She stated the country’s 50 years of self-governance had been characterized by sound governance that had put emphasis on the development of “our most valued and precious resource –– our people”.
Ifill noted that the tribute recognized the seven who had dedicated their lives to steering the course of “our ship of state through waters
of progress, be they calm, or turbulent”.
“This evening we honour seven individuals, members of the political class of Barbados, on a day when we remember our National Heroes, six of whom were masters of the art of politics,” the Senate President said.
“Sir Hugh Springer, Charles Duncan O’neal, Sir Grantley Adams and Samuel Jackman Prescod all honed their civic skills and, like Barrow, laid these skills at the behest of the political landscape of this nation,” she added.