The Full Story
Jamaicans are being urged to join the movement for reparations for the injustices suffered by the ancestors.
Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Oliva Grange, who made the call while addressing the Emancipation Jubilee at Seville Heritage Park in St. Ann, said that reparations are not only about monetary compensation but also the restoration of dignity and righting a wrong that was done to the forefathers.
“Here, we are the children and grandchildren of our ancestors; we celebrate their resilience, their determination and their sacrifice,” she said.
“Here [at Seville] we have raised a monument to our ancestors; here, we come every year to celebrate their strength, their courage, their resilience and endurance. It was for us they bled and died and lived, and it is for them that we cry ‘Reparations now, Reparations are a must’,” Ms. Grange declared.
Scores of persons descended on Seville Heritage Park for the jubilee, which began on Monday (July 31) and continued into Emancipation Day, Tuesday (August 1).
Featured were performances of traditional song, poetry and dance and a concert showcasing acts such as Etana, Richie Stevens, Sister Patt, and others.
The event was highlighted by the symbolic reading of the Emancipation Proclamation at midnight.
Patrons also enjoyed several cultural dishes from some 17 vendors, and the traditional chocolate tea served in enamel mugs.
Minister Grange said the event was a homage to the ancestors who fought and died for the freedoms citizens now enjoy.
“Today, we pledge, on behalf of our children, to work relentlessly to achieve that prosperity and self-identity that our ancestors fought to restore,” she said.
“Theirs was the task to clear the ground and ours is the task to build. Let’s build Jamaica, proud and strong, strong and free,” she urged.
The Emancipation Jubilee was organised by the Jamaica National Heritage Trust (JNHT), an agency of the Ministry, and was held under the theme ‘Strong and Free’.