(Barbados Advocate): The statue of Lord Horatio Nelson no longer stands tall in National Heroes Square, the City. It has been relocated to Block A, the Garrison.
The decommissioning of the statue occurred Monday, the day designated by the United Nations as the International Day for Tolerance. During its removal, there was loud applause and cheers from many in attendance, who used cameras and other devices to capture the historic moment.
The evening’s event also featured a cultural presentation, which included performances by entertainers, the Mighty Gabby and Nikita, narration by Cyndi Celeste and the unveiling of a painting created during the proceedings by artist, Safia Stoute.
In her address, Prime Minister the Hon. Mia Amor Mottley reminded the gathering that the removal of the statue was merely a symbolic act. She further said this act “is first and foremost a symbol that we are ready to take other steps in the development of our nationhood and in the building of our people to be that proud set of persons who can take on the world without having the historic scars pulling them back to that previous age”.
She additionally reminded that the conversation about identity and culture needs to continue. Also, the conversation around new forms of slavery and discrimination needs to take place in order for progress and greater unity.
“I ask us equally to recognise that the work must continue, but the greatest battles are no longer in Parliament, no longer at the level of our head of state, no longer in the physical infrastructure that we will put in place to remind you of what happened and what we must do not go back to.”
The relocation of the Lord Horatio Nelson statue follows many appeals by individuals and groups over the years for its removal. Back in August, there was a peaceful protest in the City where several persons voiced their disapproval of the statue being situated in the country’s capital.