TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO- The world’s longest-serving monarch, Queen Elizabeth II died on Thursday 8, September 2022.
At the time of her death, she was surrounded by members of the royal family at her summer home in Scotland. Queen Elizabeth was 96 years old.
Caribbean leaders have hailed Her Majesty’s seven decades of service and offered sympathies to her family and British people following her death.
Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley expressed condolences to the queen’s eldest son, the newly crowned King Charles III, and the Government and People of the United Kingdom on the passing of Her Majesty.
In his remarks, Rowley noted Queen Elizabeth II’s strong sense of duty and dedication left an indelible mark on the world and the UK.
The PM added that although Trinidad and Tobago gained Independence and later became a Republic, the country recognizes the late queen’s lasting legacy, particularly the selfless service she rendered to the Commonwealth.
A fond memory of the queen’s visits to Guyana was shared by President Mohammed Irfaan Ali, who said: “I join all Guyanese in expressing our profound and deepest sorrow at the death of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.”
“Her passing marks the end of an era in the history of the British Monarchy, the United Kingdom, and the Commonwealth of Nations.
Queen Elizabeth’s place in history is assured and her legacy is intact. Her long and impactful reign has helped to shape the post-World War II world. Her Majesty has been a source of stability for her country. She will be long remembered for her sterling leadership of the Commonwealth of Nations,” he added.
The Barbados President, Dame Sandra Mason, expressed her condolences to the members of the royal family and the British people.
“While her passing marks the end of an era, her reign will forever represent the kind of stoic determination our world has required of its leaders over the past century, but which, sadly, we have not always been able to witness,” she continued.
“And today, given the most precarious position facing the world and the threat that it poses to the well-being of millions, we may all find a most valuable lesson in the strength of character and concern for humanity that was so much a feature of her 70 years on the British throne.”
Likewise, Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness described Queen Elizabeth’s reign as “transformative and inspiring“, and said that the nation mourns her death.
“The world has lost a global matriarch, who was a steadying and constant force throughout many crises and periods of difficulty. Over the course of her 70-year reign, Queen Elizabeth II made an immense contribution to the world in public life and was a close friend of Jamaica. As the longest reigning British sovereign, Queen Elizabeth served with distinction, leading with dignity and grace,” Holness said.
In his recollection, of the queen’s six visits to Jamaica, noting she visited the island every decade until the early 2000s.
“During her Royal Tours, she visited Jamaica in 1953, 1966, 1975, 1983, 1994, and 2002, participating in Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings, as well as many Houses of Parliament sittings. As a result of her reign, she formed a unique bond with the people of Jamaica, and her visits were welcomed with warmth and affection,” he explained.”
The Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, Gaston Browne, praised Her Majesty’s leadership of the Commonwealth of Nations as exemplary, stating that she united the English-speaking states across continents and regions.
“Her Majesty’s life personified the simplest qualities – tolerance and decency. Her ability to inspire and unite has been one of the many remarkable features of her life which we all admire,” Browne said.
Ralph Gonsalves, Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines said the late queen was a “woman of dignity.“
“Her Majesty has had a long reign, a woman of dignity, a head of state who kept stability for the British in the United Kingdom and who as head of the Commonwealth particularly made important contributions towards the advancement of democracy and decolonisation of former British colonies,” he said.
“Upon being informed of Her Majesty’s death, I contacted our High Commissioner in London, the British High Commissioner to Barbados and St Vincent and the Grenadines and Eastern Caribbean, who’s currently in London to express to the Royal Family and the British government our profound condolences and sadness at the passing of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II”, Gonsalves added.
A statement from Bermuda’s Premier David Burt, the first leader from the region to offer condolences upon Queen Elizabeth II’s passing, stated, “A life of undimmed duty, a model of strength and devotion to country…On behalf of the Government and people of Bermuda, I express sincere condolences to the Royal Family and the people of the United Kingdom.”
Dame Cecile La Grenade, the Governor General of Grenada, expressed her sadness over the queen’s passing, saying she would remember her with “great fondness and admiration“.
“Today we mourn the loss of this great enduring Monarch who served her country and the Commonwealth with incomparable devotion for more than 70 years,” she said, adding “Although she will be greatly missed, her legacy of leadership and exemplary service shall live on indelibly.”
During an official period of mourning, Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Brave Davis ordered that national flags be flown at half-staff and lowered again.
“It is with deep regret and sadness that we learned of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. On behalf of the Government and People of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas, we offer our sincere condolences to The Members of the Royal Family,” he tweeted.
As a result of the death of Her Majesty, Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit extended his “deepest condolences” to the United Kingdom’s government and people.
Queen Elizabeth II will always be remembered as a great leader and a symbol of British culture.