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Barbuda (Antigua and Barbuda)

Last modified: 2020-12-05 by rob raeside
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Island of Barbuda

Barbuda, with a small population, has 4 independentist parties, but only one has 1 seat (the single one reserved to the island) in the parliament. It is not clear what is the flag of this main party. I believe that no insular or autonomous flag exist, even I believe that Barbuda has no autonomous status i.e. like Nevis, but only special situation as separated island.
Jaume Ollé, 9 April 2003

According to the CIA World Factbook, Antigua and Barbuda comprises six parishes and two dependencies, the two dependencies being the islands of Barbuda and Redonda.  Evidently all the parishes are on Antigua.
Joe McMillan, 9 April 2003

"In order to quell secessionist sentiment in Barbuda, the writers of the Constitution of 1981 included provisions for Barbudan self-government, constitutionally protecting the Barbuda Local Government Act of 1976. The elected Council for Barbuda is the organ of self-government. Acting as a local government, the council has the authority to draft resolutions covering community issues or domestic affairs, in the areas of defense and foreign affairs, however, Barbuda remains under the aegis of the national government. The council consists of nine elected members, the elected Barbudian representative to the national Parliament, and the Government appointed councilor. To maintain a rotation of membership, council elections are held every two years."
The above information was obtained from the California Office of Trade and Investment in Mexico City.
Chrystian Kretowicz, 9 April 2003


Barbuda Island Council

image by Jaume Ollé, 19 November 2020

image by Jaume Ollé, 19 November 2020

The Barbuda Council flag is red on horizontal green with a yellow disc in the center that occupies almost 80% of the height of the flag; inside the disc there is a typical island bird the "Frigate bird" with its characteristic red maw.

In 1996 I wrote to all the parties on the island and to the Island Council asking for the local flag. I got no answer. I also asked friends in the Caribbean and one of them informed me of a red, black and blue flag (that could correspond to the Barbuda Independence Movement), although the blue color would be green, but on television the two colors are easily confused. These three colors are used by various independence movements in some Caribbean islands as they are the traditional colors of African Americans, colors popularized by Marcus Garvey (1919).

Not getting an answer from the island I sent a second set of letters in 1997 and this time too I was left with no answer. I took it for granted that my question had been ignored.

Actually at that time no flag represented the island. Apart from the possible colors of the Barbuda Independence Movement (founded in 1983) the flags of the other parties existed, but did not represent the island. The green color was typical of the Barbuda Peoples Movement (BPM) with yellow letters (and the yellow color is used by the youth branch), the New Barbuda Development Movement probably the color orange and the Barbuda National Party color is unknown to me (maybe blue?) . Already in the 21st century a new political party emerged, the "Barbudans for a better Barbuda", the colors of which I do not know. Only the BPM has parliamentary representation (only one MP from the island goes to St Johns Parliament)

It is possible that my letters or one of them came into the hands of Council member Hakim Akbar, a local businessman (today already deceased) who was in charge of the Economy Department, who decided to design a flag to fill the gap that the letter revealed. This flag was presented to the Council with the support of the councilwoman Darlena Beazer, the current spokeswoman for the Council, and this body adopted the flag (1997); over time it has gained popularity to become an unofficial symbol of the island. On the web you can find several sites where the flag is drawn. The drawings do not correspond exactly to how they look in the photos because surely the sizes of the central disk and the exact design of the frigate bird are not regulated and flags have been manufactured with certain differences.

Red represents the land of Barbuda and green its vegetation. Between the two there would be a blue stripe representing the main sea or the lake but it is so thin that it is omitted in many flags. The yellow central disk represents the Caribbean Sun. The bird is the most characteristic animal of the island. I had news of the Barbuda Council flag in the third quarter of 2017; at that time I was very busy trying to implement the results of the referendum on self-determination in Catalonia (1-10-2017) and to take actions of peaceful resistance against the political-police-judicial coup that the violent far right is going unleash on those dates. In addition, the 2018 edition was closed, as subscribers who receive Flag Report by ordinary mail, receive the 4 annual journals together on the first days of each year so they must be sent in December (2017). It was finally included in the bulletin #91 of July 1, 2019. At that time I had some photographs and I reconstructed the bird in the best possible way; itís not much different from how it really was, but later I did a new reconstruction that looks better on the whole but isnít located exactly the same way as in the photos in which the wings and tail protrude off the yellow disk.
Jaume Ollé, 19 November 2020


Barbuda Peoples Movement

In Barbuda (Antigua-Barbuda) the Barbuda Peoples Movement pushes for independence. A Venezuelan newspaper published an independentist flag of Barbuda (red, black and blue), but it did not clarify if this flag is that of the BPM (Barbuda Peoples Movement).
Jaume Ollé , 28 July 1996