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VI needs referendum on independence

VI needs referendum on independence

Businessman and Progressive United (PU) At-Large Candidate in the 2019 General Elections in the Virgin Islands, Mr Rajah A. Smith says a referendum is needed before the territory embarks on any journey towards independence from the United Kingdom.

Speaking on the October 13, 2020, edition of the Honestly Speaking radio show with moderator, Claude O. Skelton-Cline, Smith said that while he understands some, including Skelton-Cline, are pushing towards their theories of independence, citizens still have a right to decide on the process.


Businessman and Progressive United (PU) At-Large Candidate in the 2019 General Elections in the Virgin Islands, Mr Rajah A. Smith says a referendum is needed before the territory embarks on any journey towards Independence from the UK.

Independence should be decided by citizens- Smith


“As a territory as a whole, independence is something that should be, all the citizens of the territory should be engaged in it… and share their views and I think that we should actually have a referendum with all this talk of independence and self-governance,” he said.

Mr Smith further called on Mr Skelton-Cline to lobby for a referendum on independence.

“You are within your right to support independence, just like I am in my right to oppose independence at this time, or set the stage towards independence,” Smith said.

He pointed to Puerto Rico and its referendum on independence or statehood, under the United States, “I think that is something we should do, and know where the people of the Virgin Islands want to take this territory,” Smith said.


Claude O. Skelton-Cline remarked that while a referendum along the journey is necessary, education of the people in needed so the Virgin Islands would be deciding on its future from a more informed position.

Education is necessary along the journey - Skelton-Cline


Skelton-Cline remarked that while a referendum along the journey is necessary, education of the people is needed so the Virgin Islands would be deciding on its future from a more informed position.

“It is incumbent upon every citizen of this country to do their own homework, do their own studies so that when we have whatever lead-up to determining what path we wish to take, they would, in fact, be voting from a more informed position,” he said.

Skelton-Cline reminded of the UN General Assembly adopting a Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, which affirmed the right of all people to self-determination and proclaimed that colonialism should be brought to a speedy and unconditional end.

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