Mr Smith was at the time replying to a hypothesis from former Progressive Virgin Islands Movement (PVIM) At-Large political candidate in the 2019 General Elections, Ms Shaina M. Smith-Archer, about some possible recommendations that could come in Commissioner Gary R. Hickinbottom's final report on the Inquiry.
What could come in CoI final report?
“Thinking out loud...[I] suppose a recommendation in the Commissioner's report is that we must develop a plan to be financially independent by 2035 because the UK is so done with backing our liabilities and then begin the process for us to be decolonised by 2045?”
“What would your reaction be?,” Smith-Archer further asked in a Facebook post of Thursday, January 6, 2022.
Mr Smith in his reply said, “I would be surprised if it made that recommendation. I don’t think that in the UK's current economic situation it will be planning to give up land/resources.”
He added that he believes the UK is trying to gain greater control of its existing and former colonies in a bid to resuscitate the empire under the Global Britain agenda.
Mr Smith further added that while the recommendation would surprise him, he called for the VI to rethink its education system into one that can restore confidence in Virgin Islanders and their ability to self-govern.
Shift in education culture needed – Mr Smith
“Education is of paramount importance. An education system and culture that is focused on preparing the population to take advantage of job opportunities rather than entrepreneurship will continue to produce insecure, low self-esteem, low self-confident people,” he said.
He said with the current system in the VI, there is no self-esteem, self-confidence, and self-love building education needed for self-governance,
“So we don’t produce the leadership that is trustworthy and confidence-instilling for self-governance,” Mr Smith said.