BARBADOS — The Caribbean island of Barbados elected its first female prime minister Thursday, adding to a growing list of woman-led countries in the Western Hemisphere — and hometown native Rihanna sent her congratulatory praises over social media for the barrier breaking election.
Mia Amor Mottley, head of the Barbados Labour Party, will soon be sworn in as the country’s next prime minister after the party won all 30 seats in the country’s House of Assembly. Mottley campaigned on a platform attacking high taxes and the expensive cost of living on the island. She attributed these issues to policies ushered in by the current ruling Democratic Labour Party, which has held a majority of seats in government since 2008.
The landslide victory is considered a strong rebuke of the incumbent’s agenda. The win makes Mottley just the eighth prime minister to lead Barbados since the island first gained independence from Great Britain in 1966.
Mottley will become the fifth female head of government following Dominica’s Eugenia Charles in 1980, Guyana’s Janet Jagan in 1997, Trinidad and Tobago’s Kamla Persad Bissessar in 2010 and Jamaica’s Portia Simpson Miller in 2012.
The general election results give Mottley and the Barbados Labour Party a five-year mandate to govern.