Beautiful Virgin Islands

Tuesday, Dec 06, 2022

'UK now standing over VI like a cop with a gun'– Bishop Cline

'UK now standing over VI like a cop with a gun'– Bishop Cline

Local clergyman Bishop John I. Cline says he remains disappointed by what he perceives as the United Kingdom's lack of effort in truly partnering with the Virgin Islands (VI) on the implementation of the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) recommendations and other reforms.

Bishop Cline made the comments during the Friday, June 17, 2022, edition of 'The Big Story' with host Cathy O. Richards.

“What I think troubles me most, sitting from where I sit, is the lack of willingness of the UK to truly be a partner with its Overseas Territory,” he said, regarding the threat to suspend the local constitution should the VI not implement the CoI recommendations on schedule.

“Instead, what see is a cop, this big police that’s standing over your head with a gun, and if you don’t what I say, then I will make you pay dearly by suspending your constitution and even rewriting it,” Bishop Cline added.

He added that in the 21st century, the UK ought to be more of a partner, given it has the capacity to help the VI.

“And that is one of the most disappointing things for me… that you could have a great power like the UK who has capacity, who has the ability, who has the resource to help a territory like the BVI, who they claim they value… but instead of helping US, they stand like a police over us.”

Bishop Cline made the comments during the Friday, June 17, 2022, edition of 'The Big Story' with Host Cathy O. Richards on the recent development with the VI and the UK, along with the Framework for implementation of the recommendations of the commission of inquiry report and other reforms.


No mutual responsibility from the UK - Bishop Cline


According to the Bishop, words of the UK wanting a modern partnership based on mutual respect is just words with no mutual responsibility on the side of the UK.

“You require certain things of us that we do, but we can hardly expect anything from you except for us to keep you off our back, so instead of it becoming like a partnership, it’s like a war,” he said.

He said the hope was that both the VI and the UK want the same things, however, both parties are not on the same page.

The Bishop added that the UK is now putting extreme pressure on the Government of National Unity, that they are almost ready and willing to comply to stop the suspension of the local constitution.

It has long been stated by residents, the political class and governments that a modern partnership with the UK does not exist and has never existed, since the UK has only been interested in carrying out its agenda and is never held accountable in the so-called partnership.

Even the now-sitting Premier, Dr the Honourable Natalio D. Wheatley (R7) has expressed similar sentiments in the past.

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