THE Cuffy250 Committee joins the rest of Guyana in saluting our African-Guyanese brothers and sisters on this 178th anniversary of the abolition of chattel slavery in Guyana. These almost 18 decades have seen Guyana move from the demise of slavery to political independence. During that time, our people had to endure 138 years of colonial rule which ensured that the promise of full emancipation from plantationhood was further delayed. Emancipation, therefore, has been an ongoing process for the sons and daughters of the formerly enslaved. Although the physical chains were removed in 1838, the scars of bondage continued to haunt the African in Guyana and the rest of the African Diaspora.
In 2016, the African-Guyanese community still confronts structural barriers to full emancipation. These barriers are manifested in the challenges faced by African- Guyanese, particularly in the economic sphere. While the community has made strides in the face of these challenges, the inability to compete in the private economic sector has served to blunt those successes.
It is against this background that Cuffy250 calls on the African-Guyanese community to use this emancipation anniversary to initiate a movement towards the revival of the spirit of self-realization that was so pivotal to the struggle against slavery and colonialism and for the survival and advance of the community.
Cuffy250 intends to lead by example at its 4th annual “State of the African Guyanese Forum” on Sunday, August 7 at the Critchlow Labour College in Georgetown, beginning at 9am. The theme of this year’s Forum is “African Guyanese Self-Realization: Challenges for the next 50 years.”
The Forum brings together activists, scholars and professionals along with the wider African-Guyanese community for a day-long conversation on the challenges facing African-Guyanese and crafting an agenda for overcoming those challenges.
Among the topics to be discussed are The Restoration of the Village Economy; Reparations; African-Guyanese and Entrepreneurship; African-Guyanese and Social Cohesion; Education and African-Guyanese Empowerment; African- Guyanese Self-Activity; and Centering African-Guyanese in Guyana’s Socio-Economic Agenda.
President David Granger will deliver the keynote address .Other speakers are Dr. Grantley Walrond, Norwell Hinds, Estherene Adams Vincent Alexander, Floyd Haynes, Dr Simpson DaSilva, Eric Phillips, Elsie Harry, Dr. Norman Ng A Qui, Judy Semple-Joseph, and Dr David Hinds.
Registration is $300. For early registration please call 231 7888.