The theme of my presentation From Branded to Branding for Sustainable Prosperity: Brand Jamaica on the Rise is born out of one of the most significant achievements of my Ministry over this past year, namely the passing of an Act shortly titled “The National Heroes and Freedom Fighters (Absolution from Criminal
Liability in Respect of Specific Acts)” that came into force on March 5, 2018.
Our ancestors were forcibly removed from Africa, their homeland, and branded on arrival here. They were branded as property; branded to keep them in a state of absolute servility; and branded to see themselves as less than human.
In passing the Bill, we the great grandchildren have redressed a great wrong by restoring their dignity and pride, and by acclaiming them to be celebrated freedom fighters.
I am humbled to have been the Minister to have piloted this Bill and we all should be proud that it is this Parliament which completed this long walk to justice for our ancestors.
This must count as one of the proud moments in the story of a people who struggled for survival and mixed with all the races to create our unique“Out of Many One People”; our unique vibe, our unique spirit and our unique culture, heritage and traditions; our unique branding that has been
monetised to bring revenues to our people and country; a branding that has allowed us to stand as equals on the great human stage of global achievement; a branding for sustainable prosperity.