British Virgin Islands

Saturday, Sep 18, 2021

UK attempting direct rule, control of VI’s political future - Bishop John I. Cline

UK attempting direct rule, control of VI’s political future - Bishop John I. Cline

Pastor of the New Life Baptist Church in Duff's Bottom, Tortola, Bishop John I. Cline has accused the United Kingdom (UK) of attempting direct rule and imposing policies on the Virgin Islands (VI) and other British OTs under the guise of a ‘global Britain’.

Bishop Cline was at the time speaking in a social media video made public on March 16, 2021, and later shown on the My BVI radio show.

Pointing to the ‘Global Britain and the British Overseas Territories: Resetting the relationship” 2017-2019, parliamentary report, he illustrated that demands about beneficial ownership registers, legalising same-sex marriage, the Blue Belt Programme and the removal of Belongership status have compounded concerns about the UK and its future relationship with OTs.

On the My BVI radio show, Cline reiterated his concerns, while pointing to the UK demands as problematic, on the premise that Britain is looking to undermine the VI’s economy especially as it related to public registers of beneficial ownership.


'Pattern of initiatives stacked against OTs'


“When you analyse this report suspiciously, one can see that there is a pattern of initiatives stacked against the OTs for the UK to regain control of these territories.”

“If you are asking us that we must eradicate Belongership and it's equivalent… It is an attempt to have direct rule, take control of our immigration, also override our social and moral substratum and control our political future,” Bishop Cline said.

The clergyman reasoned that UK demands regarding public registers of beneficial ownership of companies registered in the VI would bring the VI economy to its knees.

Bishop Cline also opined that the UK trying to force the VI to legalise same-sex marriage is having a blatant disregard for the beliefs and moral standards of the Overseas Territories.

“If you're saying to us we must legalise same-sex marriage, your aim at frustrating the social and moral and cultural fibre of these territories that have a high biblical standard for marriage,” he said.

Bishop John I. Cline has opined that the UK trying to force the VI to legalise same-sex marriage is having a blatant disregard for the beliefs and moral standards of the Overseas Territories.


UK attempting direct rule - Bishop Cline


According to Mr Cline, the UK is building a plethora of missiles stacked against the Overseas Territories, “no representation, no consultation, just want to pass down these things. It is an attempt for direct rule in a way that will meet world standards,” he said.

On the My BVI radio show, Mr Cline reiterated his concerns, while pointing to the UK demands as problematic, on the premise that Britain is looking to undermine the VI’s economy, especially as it related to public registers of beneficial ownership.

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