Canadian Governor General on working visit to Barbados
By Kerri Gooding
His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, the Governor General of Canada, arrived in Barbados yesterday for a working visit which will see the Governor General attending various functions which speak to his specific interests.
High Commissioner of Canada to Barbados, Ruth Archibald, in a brief interview stated, “We are hoping that in the brief period of time that they are here that they will be able to highlight some of the work that we are doing as a government in Canada in the fields of education, security and of course, we will also be meeting with the Acting Governor General and the Prime Minister.”
Along with His Excellency Johnston and Her Excellency Sharon Johnston, there is an official delegation including the Minister of Foreign Affairs, The Hon. Diane Ablonczy; Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Deepak Pbhral; High Commissioner of Canada to Barbados, Ruth Archibald; High Commissioner for Canada to the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Karen McDonald; Secretary to the Governor General of Canada, Stephen Wallace; Chief of Protocol of Canada, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, Margaret Huber; and Director General, Latin America and Caribbean Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, Neil Reeder, along with a six-member accompanying delegation.
The Governor General and the two delegations arrived in Barbados for a one-day visit on the heels of a five-day visit to Brazil. After Barbados, they will be venturing to the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago to share in their 50th Anniversary of Independence celebrations for that day and commemorate the 50 years of relations between Trinidad and Tobago and Canada.
While in Brazil, the delegation placed a heavy emphasis on education – a particular interest of the Governor General’s. The visit to Brazil coincided strategically with the Inter-American Conference on Education which was being hosted in Brazil at the time of the visit.
“For us, both in Brazil and here and also in Trinidad and Tobago, that is one of the areas that we like to highlight. We have a new regime of scholarships [also],” said High Commissioner Archibald.
While on the island of Barbados, His Excellency, Her Excellency and the delegations will meet with research project students at the Bellairs Institute which is a branch of McGill University, as well as visit the Barbados Community College and St. Ann’s Fort as meetings will also be conducted with respect to regional security, with a view to Canada strengthening her relations with Barbados in this regard.