"I am convinced that Mason will play a good role as president for her tireless work on behalf of the Barbadian people during over 30 years of political career," lawmaker Joseph Atherley stated while he congratulated the President-elect.
Previously, Mason served as an Appeal Court judge, the United Nations Committee on the Child Rights (CRC) director, West Indian Commission president, and Barbados’s Parent Education for Development Board (PAREDES) leader.
The 72-year-old politician also became the first woman to be Barbadian ambassador to Venezuela in 1992 and Queen Elizabeth II granted her the Dame Grand Cross of Saint Michael and Saint George Order (GCMG) when she became governor in 2017.
"Mrs. Mason, we will be proud to have you as its first president," Prime Minister Mia Mottley stated. Although Barbados ceased to be a British colony in 1966, it remained dependent on the Palace of Buckingham ever since.
On Sept. 29, the Barbadian Parliament unanimously approved the constitutional reform to revoke the 1966 Order of Barbados as an Order in her Majesty's Council and turn this Caribbean country into a republic.
"The time has come to put our colonial past behind us. This decision is the ultimate test of trust in who we are and what we are capable of achieving," Mottley stated.
Previously, other former British colonies made the same decision: Guyana in 1970, Trinidad and Tobago in 1976, and Dominica in 1978. These countries, however, remained part of the Commonwealth of Nations, which brings together 54 States that share historical ties with the United Kingdom.