Anthony Bailey responds to revocation of knighthood

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Statement by the Delegate for the Caribbean of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of St George, Mr Anthony Bailey, OBE, GCSS.

Having been involved with Antigua and Barbuda and the wider Caribbean since the late 1980’s, I am proud of the Constantinian Order’s longstanding and ongoing charitable and inter-faith outreach across the Caribbean region in the areas of education, community outreach and the restoration of Catholic and Anglican places of worship.

It is unfortunate that this important goodwill and interfaith engagement has been damaged by a farcical and Machiavellian side show akin to an Ealing comedy.  The strong political overtones to this dirty campaign which are well documented and the internal chivalric war led by some highly questionable and unchristian individuals is regrettable.  It only serves to negatively impact on the importance the Constantinian Order and its Caribbean delegation places on raising international awareness of the plight of those less fortunate in society and in a region that is too often overlooked due to the predominance of its picture postcard paradise image.

In referring the matter to the Order’s Grand Magistry in Rome and to our legal advisers, the Delegation for the Caribbean notes that the Antiguan Government on advice of Prime Minister Gaston Browne has annulled the institutional awards granted on the occasion of the Official Visit to the island of the Order’s Prince and Grand Master and the Cardinal Grand Prior in November 2014 which took place at the invitation and sole initiative of Prime Minister Browne and his government.
We welcome the assurance of the Governor General that such a decision was due to an administrative and legal error on the part of the Antiguan Government and should not be considered a reflection on the esteem or status of any of the eight recipients.
Good actions far outweigh the privilege of any honour and this sentiment is at the heart of our voluntary work and is an essential pillar of what our internationally recognised Order of Knighthood stands for.
My love for Antigua and Barbuda and its people is as strong today as ever before.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. Why do we treat people that want to do good in such a way? Don’t know whose toes he stood on but for our PM to invite prominent people to visit our shores, they undertake good charity work in the country and then we kick them between the legs and send them home. What sort of place is this? I for one am ashamed.

  2. The real story is not being told here ,We have a similar problem in Dominica with this Knighthood business!

  3. Part of the bigger problem is that the Prime Ministers in our region are closely associating with each other and sharing ideas and resources including Operatives while the Opposition Leaders in some cases may not even have met each other in Person.
    The way forward in this region is being charted by only the People in Power and there is no organised Opposition to create that balance of power which is necessary in a real Democracy!

  4. I recall prior to his demise, the esteemed comrade politician, diplomat, Caribbean luminary and visionary, George Odlum (of Saint Lucia), along with comrade Tim Hector, spearheaded a fraternity of Opposition Leaders in the subregion, and they did meet periodically for common understanding and collaboration. Alas, such leadership is no more.

  5. As to the matter of the knighthood and revocation of some, I ask, why does Antigua and Barbuda seem to be ever so willing to embrace Magis that come bearing gifts, only to be embarrassed later when the true colour of those characters surface? Perhaps the sine qua non of due diligence, particularly in the present world and business environment, is either overlooked or sacrificed on the altar of promised gold, frankincense and myrrh? As time has shown, the consequences of such maladministration can be disastrous to both the government and the relevant party/parties.

    • Modeste, ‘the true colours of those characters’ – you’re as bad as those dreadful tabloid papers in Britain that are spinning this tale.

  6. Its clear reading what on line that this guy Anthony Bailey has been unwittingly been dragged in the middle of an almighty fight between the two candidates for the post of Secretary General of the Commonwealth – namely the baroness patricia scotland and sir ronald saunders – the later being the loser and both having Antiguan blood! Look at the latest Mail on Sunday article speaks volumes but this is a tabloid and frankly its difficult to believe a word it says.

    What is clear to me is that Anthony Bailey came as part of a very high level official delegation to Antigua headed by one of the most senior cardinals in the world – a visit held in the presence of many senior state and religious figures. His ‘gifts’ were real and his work and donations real. Seems that the post of Sec Gen of Commonwealth is so prized that PM Browne is willing to sacrifice eight people including Bailey, a cardinal and a prince doing good work in the country based on a political vendetta against the baroness. Sad and I tend to agree with Ferdando on this. Certainly it won’t encourage other outsiders to come to Antigua and help.

  7. I really don’t understand what the fuss is all about. We already sell our citizenship, our birthright, like it was popcorn to people we don’t really know and who probably haven’t even heard of Antigua but when persons of integrity donate money for our benefit, we crucify and shame them? So what if they want a couple of paper honours in return for their donation, nothing in this world is for free. Even the Queen gives honours to people for much lesser achievements, who are we to judge? From what I read online, the governor general also received honours from the Constantinian Order, a group which has roots going back to hundreds of years ago so he really got a good deal too. This is just politrickery again at its finest.

  8. Whats more remarkable is how our government makes such blinding errors in the first place. If they screwed up in not understanding their own law then surely they should have found a solution to it.

    I hope that Anthony Bailey who by all accounts is a good guy doing good work doesn’t walk and go elsewhere. A quick look shows he operates in charity across the world and has been honoured by Britain’s Queen, the Pope and countless other leaders but we in Antigua, a country he says he loves and has been involved with since the 1980’s, treats him and those around him with contempt.

    In this day our reputation and a persons reputation is everything and Antigua has dealt a hammerblow to him those good people including a cardinal and a duke who our government invited here but for whom we sent packing having emptied their pockets of all their goodwill giving. Shameful and the PM should the right thing and stand up for justice and correct this wrong.

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