Prince William will ‘strengthen the Commonwealth’ says Zahawi
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Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge returned from their Caribbean tour last week. The couple undertook a tour of Belize, Jamaica and the Bahamas — three Commonwealth Realms — which was seen as an attempt to drum up support for the monarchy and persuade other countries not to follow Barbados by choosing to become a republic. However, their trip was met with protests, demanding an apology and reparations for Britain’s slaving past.
Their final event during their stay in Jamaica was a commissioning parade for Caribbean officer cadets in Kingston.
Wearing the tropical No 1 uniform, William diligently inspected the troops.
He and Kate rode in the same open-top vehicle used by the Queen and Prince Philip on their royal tour of the Caribbean in 1953.
However, the couple faced backlash for their choice of transportation.
William and Kate were condemned for allegedly perpetuating ‘colonial’ ideals after deciding to ride in the Land Rover.
They rode away from the Jamaican commissioning parade, standing high in the car, creating an image that harkened back to the Queen’s post-colonial tours.
Daily Mirror royal editor Russell Myers, told Thursday’s episode of Pod Save The Queen that the prince had “voiced concerns” about the parade beforehand.
He said: “One of the issues was certainly about the decision to allow William and Kate to ride round in an open-top Land Rover, wearing tropical dress which looked like something out of The Crown.
“It was well-planned, the recky party knew about it, Prince William had voiced his concerns and for one reason or another, it was then decided that he would want to do it.”
Mr Myers added: “And I was just absolutely horrified when I saw that and I just thought that was one of those instances that shouldn’t have been allowed to happen.”
The Cambridges faced protests in all three of their Caribbean destinations.
Upon their arrival to Jamaica, Kate and William were met by demonstrators demanding reparations for slavery.
Mr Myers said the parade “smacked of a colonialist past where there had already been arguments about this tour and the imagery and optics of it.”
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He also noted the Cambridges’ important role within the Firm and future of the monarchy.
He said: “They [Kate and William] paint themselves as modern royals.
“They’ve made huge strides in dragging the monarchy into the 21st century.
“They are the future of the monarchy and I was just absolutely staggered.”
Last Wednesday, Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness said his nation is “moving on” and has “true ambitions” to become an “independent” country.
He said: “There are issues here which are, as you would know, unresolved. But your presence gives an opportunity for those issues to be placed in context, put front and centre, and to be addressed as best we can.
“Jamaica is, as you would see, a country that is very proud of what we have achieved. And we are moving on and we intend to attain, in short order, our development goals and fulfil our true ambitions and destiny as an independent, developed, prosperous country.”
Upon their departure from the Bahamas on Saturday, William released an unprecedented statement about the future governance of Commonwealth nations.
The Duke noted that the tour had brought questions about the past and the future “into even sharper focus”.
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