Saturday 20 October 2018

Islanders fight legal battle after hurricane

Destruction in Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands, left by Hurricane Irma on September 10, 2017. Photo: Getty Images
Destruction in Road Town, Tortola, British Virgin Islands, left by Hurricane Irma on September 10, 2017. Photo: Getty Images

Harriet Alexander

Islanders who lost everything in Hurricane Irma in Barbuda are trying to block a government reform that they say will force them off their land and turn the sleepy Caribbean outpost into a ripe location for foreign developers.

John Mussington, the principal of the island's only secondary school, lost his home and school when the hurricane hit. He said the 1,800 residents had been taken to neighbouring Antigua. He had expected to return and rebuild but is now fighting not to lose the island.

Mr Mussington and his fellow islanders went to the high court of Antigua and Barbuda last week to fight the reform.

The land on Barbuda has been communally owned for generations. But Prime Minister Gaston Browne now wants to turn it into freehold territory, to be bought and sold.

© Telegraph

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