[KINGSTON, Jamaica] – Message to the Diaspora from The Most Honourable Andrew Holness, ON, MP, PC Prime Minister of Jamaica on the Occasion of Emancipation and Independence Day.
My fellow Jamaicans,
This year 2022 marks Jamaica’s 60th Anniversary of political Independence, and 184 years since the Emancipation Declaration of 1838 affirmed full freedom for enslaved people of African descent in Jamaica. In recognition of these momentous anniversaries, Jamaicans from all walks of life have been enthusiastic in their support for the planned series of activities for the Jamaica 60 Independence celebrations, which will also commemorate our heritage and culture.
Our journey over the past six decades as an independent country, is replete with examples of excellence in various sectors, including in music, tourism and athletics for which we are world-renowned. Our Diaspora members have always been an integral part of that experience and play a critical role in promoting “Brand Jamaica” on the world stage. We are grateful to our family overseas who consistently promote, protect and preserve our social and cultural traditions and values.
The Government of Jamaica recognizes the Diaspora as crucial partners and drivers of Jamaica’s economic development. Jamaicans overseas represent a wealth of human, social and financial capital and are key actors and influencers bringing tremendous value to Jamaica. We are actively pursuing opportunities to channel this value into mutually beneficial policy initiatives.
Our Diamond Jubilee is at a time when the global community is facing a number of challenges, including the continuing impact of COVID-19, the impacts of climate change, and the Ukraine/Russia conflict. These combined events have generated the greatest wave of global inflation in over forty years and have the potential to erode the gains achieved over time and delay the achievement of the targets we have set for ourselves, as represented by Vision 2030.
However, Jamaicans are known for our resilience and for overcoming challenges. We are learning from the mistakes of our past, and we are taking the right actions to ensure Jamaica’s continued stability and the well-being of our people.
In this regard, the Government is implementing sound fiscal policy measures to enable the country to safely navigate the challenges with which we are confronted. At the same time, we have put in place several mechanisms for targeted social intervention to cushion the effect on our vulnerable citizens. We are keeping our economy stable so Jamaicans can obtain and keep their jobs and our country can continue its development agenda which, in the long run will be better, for our people.
I invite all Jamaicans, at home and abroad, to participate in the transformation of Jamaica in the coming years, as we build on the experiences and achievements of the past sixty years. Your full engagement will ensure the success of these programmes as we strive to build a better future for ourselves and for future generations.
At 60, we reflect on how far we have come and look forward at the opportunities we can create for the greater advancement of our people and country. We must be determined to transform Jamaica into a paradise of peace, opportunity, and prosperity. Let us therefore be reinspired and recommitted to our beautiful island home as with your continued engagement and support, we reignite our nation for greatness.
Happy 60th Anniversary Jamaica!