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Jamaica Moves To Drop Queen Elizabeth As Head Of State As Duke, Duchess Of Cambridge Arrive

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Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge arrive at Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, Jamaica.

The royals’ visit to Jamaica also comes amid increasing calls for Jamaica to follow Barbados and become a republic by removing Queen Elizabeth as head of state.

The Duke and Duchess are aware of the situation, with reports saying Prince William is expected to acknowledge the issue of slavery in his speech on Wednesday evening.

Demonstrators gathered Tuesday in Kingston, Jamaica to protest the official visit of Prince William and Kate Middleton to the former British colony and demand the monarchy apologise for its role in the slave trade.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived in the capital for a three-day stop on the island, part of a larger trip by the royals to the Caribbean in recognition of the 70th anniversary of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.

However, placard-bearing protesters outside the British High Commission ahead of the royals’ arrival demanded that the monarchy pay reparations and apologise for its role in the slave trade that brought hundreds of thousands of Africans to the island to toil under inhumane conditions.

Among the protesters, Clement ‘Jawari’ Deslandes said it was a slap in the face of his ancestors for a “royal person to be coming here with no concern, no remorse in their heart.”

“They have this gentry privilege… that they can just walk up here and we must just lay a red carpet for them. Those days are over,” Deslandes said.

People calling for slavery reparations, protest outside the entrance of the British High Commission during the visit of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Kingston, Jamaica.

“I am here to represent my ancestors, all those who died in slavery and got murdered because of white people’s oppression,” he added.

The royals’ visit to Jamaica – which gained independence from British rule in 1962 – also comes amid increasing calls for Jamaica to follow Barbados and become a republic by removing Queen Elizabeth as head of state.

Things got off to a rocky start for Prince William and Kate earlier this week, after one of their first engagements in Belize had to be cancelled, reportedly after complaints from an Indigenous community.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were met with a ceremonial welcome and were greeted by dignitaries upon their arrival. Thereafter they conducted an official meeting with the Governor-General of Jamaica, Sir Richard Allen.

Their first main event saw them travel to Trench Town, Kingston — the birthplace of reggae music and home of two of Jamaica’s top Premier League football club teams, Arnett Gardens and Boys’ Town.

Ahead of a tour of the Trench Town Culture Yard Museum, Prince William showed off his soccer skills as he took part in a quick game. The couple then met soccer stars Raheem Sterling and Leon Bailey.

The royals also met some well-known Jamaican sports stars, including the recent Olympics bobsleigh team, who competed in the Olympic Games in Beijing.

For their final engagement of the day, the duke and duchess headed to the Trench Town Culture Yard Museum where they joined in some live music and played the drums.

Per People, the royal couple are aware of the situation.

Any decision about becoming a republic is for the people and government of Jamaica, a royal source pointed out. However, Prince William is expected to acknowledge the issue of slavery in his speech on Wednesday evening.

Hammed Tajudeen is the editor in-chief of Blaze News, holds Higher National Diploma(HND) in Mass Communication, graduated from Osun State Polytechnic, Iree.

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