PHOTOS: Dame Sandra Mason officially takes up Governor General post
Dame Sandra Mason, the new Governor General of Barbados (PHOTO Richard Grimes)
Barbados has officially welcomed its second female Governor General, Dame Sandra Mason, in a lavish installation ceremony on Monday at the House of Parliament, The City.
The islandwide power outage initially threatened the 4 pm start but power was restored to the Parliament buildings just in time for the commencement of the ceremony. Guests began to arrive at Parliament just after 3 pm including government ministers, members of the Opposition and their spouses, as well as Former Prime Minister of Barbados and independent representative for St Peter, Owen Arthur. The ceremony also saw a number of knights including national hero Sir Garfield Sobers, Sir Henry Fraser and Sir Trevor Carmichael. Former Governor General, Sir Elliot Belgrave, his wife and Chief Justice Sir Marston Gibson, were also in attendance and took their places among those who lined Parliament yard for the arrival of the Prime Minister and the Governor General designate.
Barbados welcomes second female Governor General
Barbadians lined the streets around Heroes' Square and Marhill Street hoping to catch a glimpse of Barbados' newest Dame. Just around 3:55 pm, a herald of sirens signaled the arrival of the Prime Minister which was then followed by the arrival of the Governor General designate. They, along with the visiting Governor General of St. Kitts and Nevis, Sir Tapley Seaton, members of the Diplomatic Corps and members of Parliament, walked the red carpet on the way to the Senate Chamber for the oath to be taken.
In a calm and clear voice, the Governor General designate took the Oath for the Execution of the Office of Governor General and officially became Dame Sandra Mason.
Dame Sandra then made her way onto Heroes' Square for the 21-gun salute after which she inspected the troops of the Guard of Honour. The ceremony concluded with Dame Sandra being escorted by the mounted unit of the Royal Barbados Police Force (RBPF), departing for Government House.