Falkland Islanders to visit St. Kitts and Nevis
Hon. Mike Summers
Hon. Roger Edwards
ZIZ News…Nov 8 2011 – Two members of the Falklands Islands Legislative Assembly, Hon. Mike Summers and Hon. Roger Edwards, will be visiting St Kitts and Nevis from 8 to 13 November. The Members of the Legislative Assembly will be meeting with government ministers and senior officials to discuss the Falkland Islands and to attend Commonwealth Games Federation meetings.
They will share first-hand their experiences of managing the Falkland Islands economy and internal governance, but also the challenges they face in the United Nations for support for their right to self determination; the very principle enacted by the people of St Kitts and Nevis when choosing to become independent from the United Kingdom in 1983. Respect for this principle remains a cornerstone of the United Nations Charter.
The Falkland Islanders remain a small, vulnerable, but distinct and resolute island people. Like many peoples in the Americas many of the Islanders can trace their families back over several generations, having arrived from Europe through natural waves of ‘free choice’ migration in the mid-1800s. The current Falklands people descend from the first known people to have settled the Falkland Islands over generations, as it had no indigenous population.
Many advances have been made in the constitutional relationship between the Falklands and the UK since those early colonial days. It is now a relationship based on partnership, shared values and the Falklands peoples’ right to determine whether they wish to retain their link with the UK. It is very different to the relationship that St Kitts & Nevis had with the UK before its independence. The Falkland Islands Constitution devolves responsibility for all issues, with the exception of defence and foreign affairs. The Falklands has developed its own full legislative and executive branches of government, with a dedicated civil service to implement Falklands’ government policy.