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Our goal is to first make the spiritual connection with the Garifuna – Eustace

Our goal is to first make the spiritual connection with the Garifuna – Eustace

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The main objective of the New Democratic Party (NDP) as regards honorary citizenship for Garifuna people in the diaspora is to first make a “spiritual connection.”

Party president Arnhim Eustace, while addressing a rally last Sunday at Sandy Bay held in honour of a visiting {{more}}Garifuna delegation, said once the spiritual connection is made, the financial benefits will follow.

“We want to take the major step. We are doing all that we can to correct what some like to call a historic wrong. But this is the biggest historic wrong that we face and we must deal with it… We will make that change. We will make that connection with our Garifuna brothers in such a way that there could be no doubt about our commitment here in St Vincent and the Grenadines, to them,” Eustace told a gathering.

According to Eustace, his party is trying to reach out to their Garifuna brothers, who were exiled from St Vincent and the Grenadines over 218 years ago and we must open our minds to the fact that they are our brothers and sisters.

“It is very important that we now recognize them and show from our perspective that we care about them and we want them to be part of us. They are already part of us, but we must put that in a framework where throughout the world it is recognized. They don’t regard any other place in the world as home; they regard St Vincent and the Grenadines as home,” Eustace said, adding that it is something we have ignored for years under colonial rule and independence.

Eustace made a pledge to the Garinagu that he will do all within his power to ensure that the process which has started will go on.

“This is a very serious issue. I don’t want it get co-mingled with our day-to-day politics. It’s far beyond that now. We want to correct the wrong that has gone on for two centuries… Our prime goal now is to make the spiritual connection with the Garifuna and they become part of our hearts and our home,” Eustace stated.

“What we have to deal with now is making sure that those who are trying to stop this process, that we stop them. We stop them by doing the necessary.”

According to the Opposition Leader, citizenship has been given to persons for business purposes and they have no connection to this country.

“We don’t even want to give honorary citizenship to our own? Think about it… I welcome our brothers here and we will work with them to ensure that the end of the situation where one day every Garifuna can feel a link to this country deeper than they had before because they will be honorary citizens of St Vincent and the Grenadines,” Eustace added.

Last Sunday’s rally was also addressed by United States based professor Wellington Ramos, Garifuna activist Joseph Guerrero and local agronomist Clive “Bish-I” Bishop.(KW)

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