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#1 2017-08-13 08:43:43

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President Bharrat Jagdeo yesterday promised that his government will remove obstacles to the development of African people wherever it is found, as Rastafarians called for job creation and hope for Black youths.President Jagdeo’s pronouncement also came as the country’s main African organisation boycotted the launch of the activities to mark the International Year for People of African Descent (IYPAD).Among the activities planned are visits by African cultural groups to Guyana and vice versa, diplomatic representation at the African Union, masquerade competitions, debating competitions, various fora including a caucus of African professionals on ancestral lands, fashion displays, plays and dramas, food fairs,Bob Uecker Braves Throwback Jersey, workshops on boat building and the coconut industry, the establishment of African leadership clubs for youths, and tours of villages bought by freed African slaves.A group of Rastas at the International Year of People of African Descent.The ceremony was punctuated with dance, the singing of folk songs and a sacred drum chant.The umbrella African organisation in Guyana, ACDA,Michael Jordan Bulls Throwback Jersey, had called for the programme to be matched against the UN call for the year to spur the elimination of racism and ensure the political, cultural, economic and social rights of people of African descent. It boycotted the event because of lack of consultation.The main opposition party, the PNCR, whose supporters are predominantly Afro-Guyanese, had agreed with ACDA and the other organizations, and boycotted the ceremony.The Rastafari community was the only organisation allowed to speak at the official launching ceremony.“…Instead of addressing these legitimate concerns raised by African Guyanese organizations, your Ministry, using the old Slave Master Strategy against African ancestors,Alex Galchenyuk Canadiens Jersey, sought to divide and rule,Mark Sanchez USC Jersey, (house slaves versus field slaves), by approaching individuals within the African Guyanese Community to participate in the so-called launch in the hope of advancing the propaganda that African Guyanese groups have been involved,” Robert Corbin, the leader of the opposition said in a letter to Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport.But Jagdeo charged that if the PNCR had genuine concerns it should bring it to the table, and “don’t stay in the corner and cry like a baby.”But despite the opposition, the government rolled out a programme that would include a series of discussion forums, and Jagdeo said that if anything is found to be inimical to the development of people of African development it would be removed.He said that he hoped the programme of activities would conclude with a list of solutions.A boy performs a sacred drum chant at the launch of International Year of People of African Descent.The ceremony, held at the Guyana International Convention Centre, saw a strong presence of the Rastafarian community, who employed a light-hearted response to President Jagdeo’s declaration that he would not legalise marijuana.Head of the Rastafarian Council,Louisville Cardinals Jerseys, Ras Leon Saul, drew cheers from the audience when he said that Africans must not boycott themselves – an obvious reference to the action taken by ACDA and the PNCR.But he also drew cheers when he pronounced that all is not well with the Rasta community, “We are ailing.”He said that in the programme rolled out by the government, he did not hear anything about economic opportunities and job creation, saying that the African youths are “an endangered species.”Saul said that the Rastafarian community is the most discriminated group in Guyana and said better conditions for Rasta will be better conditions for all African people.As a result, he declared that the revolution of 1763, when the slave Cuffy led a rebellion against the colonial masters and temporarily made himself Governor of the colony of Berbice, is not yet over.President Jagdeo bemoaned the Atlantic slave trade and said an apology is not enough but that there must be a declaration of the slave trade as a holocaust and compensation paid.He hailed the contributions of people of African descent to the development of Guyana and said he did not want the national year to be just about slogans but about solutions.Minister Frank Anthony also hailed the contributions of the people of African descent to the development of Guyana and paid tribute to their resilience when in 1857, just a few years after slavery was abolished, an estimated 70, 000 properties were bought by the freed African slaves.He said they later moved on to become leaders in all facets of life, including medicine, politics and education.A representative from all of Guyana’s other ethnic groups, except the Europeans, delivered tributes to the people of African descent.International Year of People of African Descent kicks off at the 1763 MonumentScores of persons from across Guyana gathered in front of the 1763 Monument yesterday to celebrate the launching the year of “People of African Descent”.Dancers performs at the launch of International Year of People of African Descent.Speaking with the Secretary of the International Year of People with African Descent Committee, Ms. Daly,Brandon Graham Eagles Jersey, Kaieteur News was told that during the year 2010 after months of conducting meetings, a policy document was formed and there are many activities scheduled on the committee’s calendar of events.Yesterday saw many persons from all across Guyana coming out to join and participate in the launching celebration.The crowd then left the 1763 Monument and marched to the International Convention Centre located on the East Coast of Demerara.This activity kick-started the list of events scheduled throughout the remainder of the year.

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