Cynthia Barker

Sunday September 1, 2019

Double Portion of Honour – The Worshipful, Deputy Mayor of the Borough of Hertsmere – Cynthia Barker

A new dawn is breaking in the horizon of United Kingdom. A new leader of the ruling party, the Conservative Party elected the new Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. New hope and new aspirations. The world is looking forward to the new Great United Kingdom. Members of the public like myself are praying that the Lord may guide him in every decision that he will make. And, may the citizens of the United Kingdom rediscover who they are; a nation of those who fear and revere the Living God who created the heavens and earth, who gave His only begotten Son Jesus Christ. May the power of the Holy Spirit rekindle the nation for this generation and leave a posterity to its descendants to enjoy the goodness of God in this land. Our scriptural prayer: Psalm 33:12 (NKJV) Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people whom He has chosen for His own inheritance.

To summarize what happened in the political arena these past three years, can only be described as extraordinary. The political parties in the UK are: Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats, Scottish Nationalist Party, United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) and the Green Party. The Conservative party had entered into an agreement with Democratic Unionist Party- Northern Ireland to keep their party in power. Moving forward, the Brexit Deal formulated by former Prime Minister Theresa May and her Cabinet members had been rejected by the Parliament three times, a historical government defeat. When the European Election was held, the Conservative Party had suffered tremendous loss which gave rise to a new party called the Brexit Party. Eventually, Theresa May resigned as Prime Minister for failing to deliver Brexit on time. The issue on Brexit took people to both Pro-remain and Pro-exits to the streets to stage protests. The public clearly lost its confidence in the political system. This is just a snippet of the mood of politics in the United Kingdom.

But then, as the result of 2 May 2019 elections amidst this turmoil, British-Filipina Councillor under Conservative Party, Cynthia Barker won the re-election in Hertsmere. She also won as Councillor and elected by her colleagues as Deputy Mayor of Hertsmere. That is astonishing. She convinced the voting public that she can serve them best regardless of their perception of political parties.Her fellow public servants bestowed upon her the trust to act in place of the Worshipful Mayor, the Mayor of the Borough of Hertsmere, Alan Plancey, in case he is not available. At the end of the day the political parties give guidelines but aside from the political party that they are affiliated with, elected officials will serve based on his/her character and judgement not just to the Party to which they belong to. Let us hear straight from Ms. Cynthia Barker:

GPD: “Kindly describe the position you run for last 2 May 2019 local elections in the United Kingdom”.

CB: “I did run for re-election in the Borough but for a completely new ward and new seat. Due to the Boundary Change on 2nd May 2019, my seat in Potters Bar was made redundant and I was assigned to contest one of the most marginal seats in the Borough.”

GPD: “You were elected as Deputy Mayor of Hertsmere. What is the process to be chosen as one?”

CB: “The Deputy Mayor is an elected Councillor elected by fellow Councillors. Each political party will nominate each candidate. The Councillors present then vote by hand as you’d have seen in the webcast of the council meeting on 15 May 2019. (This is for the information of Filipinos. In the Philippines, the public vote for Mayor and Vice Mayor are held during local elections decided by the public. In the UK, elected Councillors are the ones who vote for the Mayor and Deputy Mayor.)

GPD: “Are you still President of the Rotary Club? You are very active in the FilipinoCommunity, and other Non-Government Organizations. Apart from sharing the vision of FWA- UK how do you use your influence in politics to help Filipinos in the UK?

CB: “I just finished my term as President of the Rotary Club of Elstree & Borehamwood. I remain active in our club and this year I’ll be serving as club secretary. In everything I do politically, I have the support of the Conservative Party. It is important to use my position to promote the Filipino community in Britain and Europe. I also founded the “Conservative Friends of the Philippines” which is aimed at providing the Filipino community in the UK a platform with which to express their values of hard work and strong family ties, in support of the Conservative Party in the UK. I also hope to encourage, mentor and help develop future candidates from our Filipino community. “

GPD:” Politics in the UK is in a complicated situation, your honour winning as Deputy Mayor is quite impressive. What is your secret?

CB: “My secret is not really a secret. I take pride being a Filipina. My heritage is my strength. The Conservative Party embraces that. We have traits that are valuable to political parties – skills, hard work, loyalty, honesty, trustworthiness and faith values. As economic migrants, we also have a general aspiration to improve our lives here which serves as our inspiration.”

GPD: “What should the immigrants in this country expect with the Brexit; Filipinos who are EU Citizens and other Filipino migrants in this country?

CB: “I’d say continue doing what we’re doing in terms of work and residency. We have nothing to fear for as residents here in the U.K.” It is true that the Filipino traits mentioned by Ms. Cynthia is a big factor that this country is known as a second home for many of us, which welcomed us and in return, our prayers, loyalty and service will be for this great nation. And we believe, Psalm 22:28(NKJV) “For the kingdom is the Lord’s, And He rules over the nations.”

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