Jamaica’s new Consul-General in New York, Alison Roach Wilson has lauded the more than five decades of self-rule in the country.
In making her argument she retraced the historic July 19, 1962 agreement which resulted with the Parliament of the United Kingdom passing the Jamaica Independence Act that granted independence to the island nation as of Aug. 6.
The latest diplomat to represent diasporan Jamaicans throughout the New York region explained the theme derived from the national ‘out of many one’ motto to be the unifying mantra that has sustained the island/nation despite challenges and adversities it has maintained since abandoning dominance from British colonial rule.
“As we celebrate Jamaica’s 57th independence anniversary, let us reflect on the theme, ‘One Nation One People’, newly installed Consul General, Alison Roach Wilson said in a statement to nationals of the Caribbean island.“On that day, the Union Jack was ceremonially lowered and replaced by the Jamaican flag throughout the country,” she said.
“It is therefore very fitting to celebrate this year’s independence, under the theme, ‘One Nation One People’ to demonstrate the need for a distinct ‘national identity’ and to encompass the diversity of ethnic and religious cultures.
We unite as people of diverse backgrounds and continue to reap successes in various areas, including sports, culinary arts, and the creative arts.
Our Reggae music, which was made famous internationally by artists such as Bob Marley, has been added to the 2018 Intangible Cultural Heritage List of the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). This is a significant achievement for an island with a population of less than three million,” she acknowledged.
In lauding more than five decades of self-rule she heaped high praises on progressive leaders particularly those who proposed Vision 2030 goals, a deadline to progress and technological advances in that year for a more competitive, international and advanced society.
“We have made considerable progress economically over the past years by lowering inflation, reducing unemployment, and improving overall performance in the economy,” she added.
“The government of Jamaica continues to seek out investment, build new trade relations, and promote social and infrastructural developments.”
Generous in doling out platitudes to the two-political party Democracy reputed for enhancing trailblazing achievements in sports, entertainment, culture, gender, culinary advances, science, and Pan-African enlightenment, CG Wilson also complimented the diasporan immigrant community.
“I must also acknowledge the substantial support of the Jamaican diaspora community for always contributing financially and otherwise to their family members and friends in our homeland.”
A consistent and reliable source of supplemental aid, since independence families have been assured of arrivals of barrels loaded with household supplies and enhancements particularly at seasonable holiday intervals.
Money transfers have also been a major contributor to the economy.
“Remittances are now the lead contributor to Jamaica’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), which increased to $2.34 billion in 2018, from $2.33 billion in 2017,” she explained.
“Remittances in Jamaica averaged $1.87 billion from 2001 until 2018, reaching an all-time high of $2.33 billion in 2018 and a record low of $968 million in 2001.”
Optimistic about the future she held no delusions that “as a young nation, Jamaica faces societal and economic challenges that could derail the accomplishments of the past few years.”
But she proposed that with “strong leadership both at the public and private sectors, I am confident that Jamaica will continue to be successful.”