Barbados elects 72-year-old as first-ever president

Barbados has elected Dame Sandra Mason, 72, as its first-ever president as it edges closer to becoming a republican state.

Ms Mason was elected as the country’s president after securing the support of all members of the House of Assembly except that of Caswell Franklyn during a joint sitting of the country’s lawmakers on Wednesday.

Local media reports that Mr Franklyn objected to Ms Mason’s nomination, staging a walkout in protest.

Her emergence as the president of Barbados removes Queen Elizabeth as Barbados head of state.

Barbados will on November 30 officially end its political tie with Britain to become a republican state.

Ms Mason will be sworn in on November 30, marking the country’s 55th independence anniversary.

Speaking after the election, Speaker of Barbados Assembly Arthur Holder said she emerged president of the country after winning a secret ballot.

Mr Holder explained that Ms Mason got two-third supports required by the constitution for her to be announced as president of the country.

Born in January 1949, Ms Mason who has been governor-general since 2018, was educated at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus in Barbados and the Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad where she graduated with a Bachelor of Laws degree in 1973 and a Certificate of Legal Education in 1975.

Barbados government had in 2020 announced its intention of becoming a republic state last year.

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