IN THE NATIONAL INTEREST

anguillian
By anguillian June 6, 2016 11:15 Updated

 

 

 

It is difficult to find words to adequately describe the national fever and community spirit which permeated our island in the run-up to, and on the actual, Anguilla Day celebrations. All through the island there has been overwhelming evidence of the national pride experienced by our people, while the inhabitants of our neighbouring sister islands carried on their routine activities seemingly oblivious of our celebrations.

But we, in Anguilla, only know that feeling of ecstasy as we reflect on our long and chequered journey to self-determination. This includes the battles of territorial integrity and survival fought in earlier days against the French and other invasions but, more importantly our struggles, later on, for constitutional and political freedom from an unpopular and oppressive St. Kitts regime.

Yet, for us, life is still filled with challenges and we desperately need this spirit of community involvement and unity, that so nobly surround Anguilla Day, to follow us into the future. Patriotism and achievement must continue to be our watchwords as we move forward. Ahead of us, in one year, is the 50th Anniversary of the Anguilla Revolution and Anguilla Day. The hope is that it will find us liberated from the many challenges and perplexities that now stalk us today. The Anguilla Day addresses, during the Official Parade at the James Ronald Webster Park, touched on a number of statements which, perhaps, are worth repeating. Governor Christina Scott said in part: “Let us foster a commitment that when we come together next year to celebrate fifty years from the Revolution, Anguilla and its people can say that, personally, and collectively, they committed to their challenges. It will make cherishing that milestone all the sweeter.” Chief Minister, Mr. Victor Banks stated: “This 49th Anniversary, while it is a time for celebration in its own right, is also a time for preparation for that momentous milestone – the 50th Anniversary – the Jubilee Anniversary next year. A good question, at this time, is: Are we on the right path – achieving the visions of the architects of the Anguilla Revolution? I also add a follow-up question: Are we employing the tried and proven teachings of mutual respect that distinguish us at home and abroad?”

Looking back, we have had a great number of accomplishments. For a developing island, with a growing population, and new generations of people now, and in the future, we cannot afford to be at war with ourselves. We cannot in any way dismantle the structures of unity, cooperation, respect, and love we have built up over the years.
Anguilla Day has proven to be a great unifying force in our island; and it is the spirit of this event which must remain with us now, and in the years ahead, in order to accomplish greater goals. This means that Government and people must work together for the common good on programmes and policies that will encourage and bolster economic and social development, job creation and, of course, further constitutional reform. In short, we must work together in the national interest of our people, and Anguilla, with all the strength and endurance called for in our Coat of Arms.

anguillian
By anguillian June 6, 2016 11:15 Updated

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