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Diverse Guyana has achieved national unity; East Indians contributed culturally, economically – Granger

A section of attendees at the 47th Republic Anniversary Flag Raising Ceremony at D’urban Park, Georgetown.

President David Granger Thursday- Guyana’s 47th Republic anniversary- said Guyana has achieved unity, and he highlighted the contributions of East Indians to the country’s development in this year which marks the 100th anniversary of their arrival here as indentured servants.

Addressing the flag raising ceremony at D’urban Park, the Guyanese leader said 2017 is an opportunity for Guyana to celebrate the contributions of the Indian community.

He credited the almost 240,000 Indians, who were transported to then British Guiana from 1838 to work mainly on sugar plantations for almost 80 years, with contributing to the cultural and economic development of this country. Most of them opted to remain here rather than return to their native land.


“Most of the indentured immigrants remained to make our country their home at the end of their contracts of service. They invigorated our cultural life with devotional festivals, colourful dress, tasty foods, vivacious dance, vibrant music, two great world religions – Hinduism and Islam – and other cultural retentions.

Indian indentured immigration reshaped our economic landscape by making an indelible mark on the cattle, coconut, fishing, rice and sugar industries. The Indian impact is visible on every aspect of national life – the arts, business, diplomacy, education, engineering, industry, jewellery, law, media, medicine, politics, the public service and trade unionism,” he said.

The indentured labourers were brought here after slavery was abolished and  free labour had been no longer available to plantation owners.

The President said Guyana’s 47th anniversary as a republic “is a happy occasion to celebrate the uniqueness of our nationhood” intensified efforts to to unite the descendants of fore-parents who were brought to these shores, either as enslaved workers or indentured labourers, to toil on the plantations.

“Independence reminded us, also, that it was their struggles – their resistance, revolts and riots on the plantations – which helped to make their descendants a free people and to make this country a free state.

The establishment of the Cooperative Republic on 23rd February 1970 intensified our efforts to unite our peoples into a plural nation under the inspirational motto – ‘One people, One nation, One destiny’,” he said.

He said Guyanese – the descendants of the indigenous Amerindians and of those who were brought here from Africa, Asia and Europe – have welded our country, irreversibly, into a plural society.

“The Republic guaranteed greater cultural freedom, encouraged diverse beliefs, respected differences of creed, culture, race or religion and entrenched constitutional protection to proscribe discrimination.

The Republic started the task of shaping a society that was culturally plural by promoting the unhindered celebration of the Christian, Islamic and the Hindu festivals. The Republic aspired to ensure that we would live together in harmony free from racial and religious conflict,” he added.

President Granger said Guyana is committed to eliminating extreme poverty, eradicating inequalities; expanding the space for cultural diversity and enhancing the sense of national belonging. The Republic is becoming a more socially cohesive country, one that: “… works towards the well-being of all its members, fights exclusion and marginalisation, creates a sense of belonging [and] promotes trust…”

He added that , “Guyana’s various cultural threads have been interwoven into the tapestry of nationhood. We celebrate, today, our republicanism and our pluralism. We have achieved unity by our diversity.”

He greeted Guyanee at home across the country’s ten regions and in the diaspora on this 47th anniversary of the Republic.

The flags of each of the 10 administrative regions were among those that fluttered just north of the stage where dignitaries were seated.

Possibly due to competing events, just about 4,000 persons attended the event.

  • Gtloyal

    Congratulations on another anniversary as a Republic.
    Having said that, I’ll now ask whether it was appropriate. Was it? Was it appropriate to congratulate … ourselves?
    The way we have this country today, should we be proud of this? The latest news says it even looks like we want to be a monarchy with one perpetual ruler. I am having serious doubts.

  • rudeo

    Placating East Indians will not cut it…they are the ones suffering from sugar demise, rice for fowl feed, watching their leaders pushed aside for another kind,…where is this cohesion?…..East Indians are labelled as a necessary nuisance in the mosaic of the PNC….their voices on the chambers of commerce are branded as mouthpieces of the PPP…an East Indian branded party….don’t throw crumbs at them for token support…you are a failure….what is there to celebrate?….an insult to the true meaning of the Amerindian word and its true meaning.”Celebrate after achievement”

  • ExPPP_Man

    East Indians did what ? Contribute to national development ? Since when ? Over the last 2 years all I heard were that East Indians are all thieves and corrupted. Nonsense, I tell you,nonsense.

    • Col123

      hey ex kkk guy..tek some credit…alyou deserve mo than mo comin laang time from now..

      • ExPPP_Man

        We East Indians feeding all yuh, all yuh still ungrateful to we. killing we for we savings. All yuh only overcrowding the prisons.

  • Col123

    Wow?.. my maximum leadah and President Grangie Singh…giving them PPP and them corrupt and thieving stooges bellywuk… and recognizing all them soupies near and far in Richmond hill and Brampton for drug pushing and removing capital from Guyana… some contribution to the previous parallel economy… now that we have mo law an order.

    • rs dasai

      Grangie Nagamotoo Ramjattan Sharma etc.

      • Col123

        well!..I just figured out your response after a hour……damn age thingy…I thought them guys ded!

        • rs dasai

          Some hold the view that if one is not born in India or Africa, one is not ‘Indian’ or ‘African’.

          • Col123

            Hey, that’s just a view…if you don’t take the time to look at it….the profile says it all…If you have access to netflix..look at trevor noah “afraid of the dark”…its a one houir funny piece of some related comedy

          • Col123

            So RS…I know it is taking me some time to figure it… if Naggie was born in the Vatican, would that make him a pope?

          • rs dasai

            You know that Dem Baays do not marry. They buy by the pound, not the whole cow. A Bastard it is .

  • Nailer59

    National unity? Guyana is not there yet, rudeo and ExPPP proves my point.

  • Col123

    common scientific fact raj…we all do pass on in that manner..with our eyelids open….no hard feeling bro…recognize sarcasm when you see it…

  • a former Guyanese


  • a former Guyanese

    The only difference is if Indians voted for Indians, that is RACISM. However, if Blacks voted for Blacks, that is TOGHERNESS.

  • Chris Bissoondharry

    Damn right Lance. What has government done for Indians. I can’t think of a single thing

  • Pa

    It`s sad to read some of these comments guys have you ever engage people from India or Pakistan in a conversation and they berate their country / countrymen the way we do its sad