Antigua and Barbuda’s 36th Independence Anniversary

Antigua and Barbuda’s 36th Independence Anniversary

The independence of Antigua and Barbuda is celebrated on November 1. This holiday commemorates the independence of Antigua and Barbuda from the United Kingdom in 1981.

Antigua and Barbuda is a small island country that consists of two major islands and a number of smaller islands. Christopher Columbus was the first to sight the islands in 1493. They were colonized by the English in 1632.

In 1672, the islands of Barbuda and Antigua became part of the colony known as the Leeward Islands. In 1816, the colony was divided in two (with Montserrat, Barbuda, and Antigua as one colony), but it was eventually reformed in 1833 and existed until 1958.

After the Second World War, the colonial system began to decline. In 1958, Antigua and Barbuda joined the West Indies Federation. The short-lived federation collapsed in 1962. Antigua and Barbuda became a separate colony. In 1967, the islands became a state in free association with the UK.

On November 1, 1981, Antigua and Barbuda became a fully independent state within the Commonwealth of Nations. The anniversary of independence is now celebrated as a national holiday. It is marked with various festive events.

The island of Barbuda was recently devastated by Hurricane Irma, the strongest recorded hurricane ever to hit the Atlantic, with sustained winds of 185 mph. The monstrous storm hit Barbuda with an initial $600 million worth of damage. It destroyed 95 percent of Barbuda’s infrastructure, including 1,086 homes. Forty-four percent of the island’s structures must be demolished and rebuilt.

 The tragedy that Irma brought has tested the people of Barbuda, but they have remained resilient through these trying times. It’s time to create a sustainable development plan for the devastated island of Barbuda, according to Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Minister Asot Michael.

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| 59 views | November, 16th, 2017

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