Categorized | Featured, National News

Independence Celebrations To Honour Women


On the 50th anniversary of the Women’s Suffrage Movement, the annual Independence Celebrations Committee has decided to highlight the struggle and achievements of the Bahamian woman.

Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture Dr. Danny Johnson, accompanied by committee members on Sunday revealed a long list of planned cultural events to highlight this year’s independence day.

The events begin July 6.

“It has been 50 years since women first got the right to vote and of course thereafter we got universal suffrage and for us here in The Bahamas everything culminated into what we know as Majority Rule. There are so many historic and epic events involving Bahamian females that we have not given appropriate credence to. So as we are celebrating our independence we want to explain to people what it took to become independent,” he said.

“We have the misconception in The Bahamas that we had an easy time getting our independence. So when you hear about stories like the three ladies in Cat Island who were almost flogged to death, or when we hear about stories like James Carmichael-Smith who ended up giving up his life so that black women would no longer be beaten you realise that the point we are now at took a lot of blood, sweat and tears because people died for what they believe in.”

This year’s theme, “The Bahamas: United in Love and Service,” seeks to remind Bahamians of the strength of a “United People,” who have demonstrated excellence in service during the country’s formative years.

Consequently, the centerpiece of this year’s celebrations is focused on the “Bahamian Woman,” which will begin with the struggle of the Women’s Suffrage Movement and extend to the achievements of contemporary Bahamian Women.

Beginning July 6, there will be a special exhibition to honour the courageous women of the Suffrage Movement and the achievements of contemporary Bahamian women.

The exhibition will be displayed at Rawson Square.

National Pride Day will also be observed on July 6.

A special cultural service will be held at Rawson Square at 10:00 a.m. That will kick off the National Pride Day and “Raise Our Flag,” festivities.

Food and craft vendors will also be at Rawson Square throughout the afternoon with various craft items and Bahamian dishes.

Free entertainment will be provided in the square until 5:00 p.m.

A family fun day will be held on June 7 and an independence church service will be held the following day.

The governor general is expected to deliver a special address at the church service.

Later that afternoon at 5:30 p.m. the Royal Bahamas Police Force (RBPF), the Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF) and prison bands will host a Beat Retreat.

As customary, independence celebrations will begin on Clifford Park on June 9.

The evening of celebration will include the National Youth Orchestra, Battle of Youth Bands, an ecumenical service and cultural show.

Uniformed branches will conduct a march pass and the prayer and glad raising will take place just before midnight.

On independence day there will be a People’s Rush, which is expected to include all major Junkanoo groups.

The mini parade will take place downtown.

“These events promise to be intense and exciting, setting the stage for our 40th year anniversary. This independence committee begins planning for next year’s celebrations. You should be excited to know that next year’s celebrations will actually begin the end of summer 2012,” Dr. Johnson said.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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