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Barbados Governor-General

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The Governor-General (GG) of Barbados acts as the domestic representative for the Chief or Head of State. As a Constitutional Monarchy, the Head of State’s role has been filled by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II since February 6th, 1952.

Barbados has one of the oldest Westminster-style parliaments in the western hemisphere. The governor and a council’s office were established in 1627, with the House of Assembly constituted in 1639 (then known as the House of Burgesses). Upon independence, this council was replaced with a Senate.

The Head of State appoints the Governor-General upon recommendation by the Prime Minister of Barbados. Before achieving independence on November 30th, 1966, Governor-General’s post was known simply as ‘Governor.’

The governor-general’s responsibilities have evolved, along with Barbados’ evolution as a sovereign and independent nation.

Responsibilities of the Governor-General of Barbados include:

— Appointing 7 of the 21 members of Senate
— Providing assent for primary legislation enacted through the House of Assembly and the Senate
— Appointing the Cabinet upon the Prime Minister’s advice and other ministers of the Crown
— Appointing the Prime Minister following legislative elections
— In the case of a minority government, the GG must appoint the most suitable candidate for the position of Prime Minister
— Representing Barbados during State visits abroad and receiving Royal visitors, Heads of State, and foreign ambassadors to the country
— Performing royal constitutional and ceremonial duties in Barbados
— Accrediting Barbadian High Commissioners and ambassadors





Barbados Governor Generals and their Terms of Office

Governor-General and Tenure

— Sir John Montague Stow
30/11/1966 – 18/05/1967

— Sir Arleigh Winston Scott
18/05/1967 – 09/08/1976

— Sir William Douglas
09/08/1976 – 17/11/1976 (acting, first time)

— Sir Deighton Lisle Ward
17/11/1976 – 09/01/1984

— Sir William Douglas
10/01/1984 – 24/01/1984 (acting, second time)

 Sir Hugh Springer
24/02/1984 – 06/06/1990

— Dame Nita Barrow
06/06/1990 – 19/12/1995

— Sir Denys Williams
19/12/1995 – 01/06/1996 (acting)

— Sir Clifford Husbands
01/06/1996 – present

— Sir Elliott Belgrave
June 1st, 2012 to Current

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Last Modified: November 7th, 2020
Published: July 8th, 2018
Publisher: Totally Barbados
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Brett Callaghan is the founder and managing director of Totally Barbados. I specialize in writing content for the tourism industry for my island home of Barbados. I help companies build strategies to grow their businesses online with SMART marketing, advertising, and social media goals.