Guyana Resource Center
Set like a gem in the crown of South America, nestled on the North-Eastern shoulder, defying the raging Atlantic Ocean, Guyana's many waterways reflect the source of it's name "The Land of Many Waters"
Image hosting by Photobucket Image hosting by PhotobucketKaieteur Falls, the world's highest single drop waterfall (741 feet).Image hosting by Photobucket Image hosting by Photobucket
Google
Sunday, May 21, 2006
Remembering Independence
The hug: Dr Jagan and Forbes Burnham hug each other in the National Park as British Guiana becomes independent.

Ten years ago, in observance of our 30th Independence Anniversary, the Sunday Stabroek published a series of feature articles written by reporters by Miranda La Rose and Desiree Wintz. Today, as we approach our 40th year, we republish those articles, which first appeared on Sunday May 26, 1996.

Thirty years ago today the Union Jack was lowered for the last time over British Guiana, and the Golden Arrowhead raised over an independent Guyana. In the second symbolic gesture of that night, the leaders of the two major political parties of the Commonwealth's newest nation embraced. It was arguably the last moment of true national unity the country has known in the three decades since.

The activities associated with independence really began the week before the actual night, when the Demerara Bauxite Company handed over Independence Arch in Brickdam as a gift to the people of Guyana, and the Booker Group of Companies presented the fledgling University of Guyana with 149 acres of land at Turkeyen.

Perhaps the most important 'gift' if such it could be called, was the returning of Atkinson Field to this country by the United States of America on Independence Day itself. During the Second World War, the British had given the Americans a ninety-nine year lease on the aerodrome in exchange for ships to help them in thee war against Hitler, but since among other reasons, it was not of major strategic importance in the post-war period, the US agreed that the 'Base', as it was called should revert to Guyanese control. (It is now Cheddi Jagan International Airport, Timehri). May 26, 1966 was too the very first State Opening of the National Assembly by the Queen's representative, the Duke of Kent, who handed over the Constitutional Instrument of Independence to the then Prime Minister, Forbes Burnham.

But the Independence celebrations were not all pomp, circumstance and political symbolism. One of the major highlights was perhaps this country's most successful cultural presentation, a historical pageant reflecting the contributions of the various peoples who have their home here.

To mark this Independence anniversary Sunday Stabroek has spoken to some of those attended the Constitutional Conferences in London in 1962-63, and again in 1965, when the date of independence was decided, as well as involved in organising the independence celebrations.

Ten years ago, in observance of our 30th Independence Anniversary, the Sunday Stabroek published a series of feature articles written by reporters by Miranda La Rose and Desiree Wintz. Today, as we approach our 40th year, we republish those articles, which first appeared on Sunday May 26, 1996.

Thirty years ago today the Union Jack was lowered for the last time over British Guiana, and the Golden Arrowhead raised over an independent Guyana. In the second symbolic gesture of that night, the leaders of the two major political parties of the Commonwealth's newest nation embraced. It was arguably the last moment of true national unity the country has known in the three decades since.

The activities associated with independence really began the week before the actual night, when the Demerara Bauxite Company handed over Independence Arch in Brickdam as a gift to the people of Guyana, and the Booker Group of Companies presented the fledgling University of Guyana with 149 acres of land at Turkeyen.

Perhaps the most important 'gift' if such it could be called, was the returning of Atkinson Field to this country by the United States of America on Independence Day itself. During the Second World War, the British had given the Americans a ninety-nine year lease on the aerodrome in exchange for ships to help them in thee war against Hitler, but since among other reasons, it was not of major strategic importance in the post-war period, the US agreed that the 'Base', as it was called should revert to Guyanese control. (It is now Cheddi Jagan International Airport, Timehri). May 26, 1966 was too the very first State Opening of the National Assembly by the Queen's representative, the Duke of Kent, who handed over the Constitutional Instrument of Independence to the then Prime Minister, Forbes Burnham.

But the Independence celebrations were not all pomp, circumstance and political symbolism. One of the major highlights was perhaps this country's most successful cultural presentation, a historical pageant reflecting the contributions of the various peoples who have their home here.

To mark this Independence anniversary Sunday Stabroek has spoken to some of those attended the Constitutional Conferences in London in 1962-63, and again in 1965, when the date of independence was decided, as well as involved in organising the independence celebrations.

Stabroek News
Link