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Minister Musa says UEF’s Emancipation Day concerns will be “taken into consideration.”

PoliticsMinister Musa says UEF’s Emancipation Day concerns will be “taken into consideration.”

by Khaila Gentle

BELIZE CITY, Fri. Oct. 21, 2022

Minister of Home Affairs, Hon. Kareem Musa, says that the concerns of the UBAD Educational Foundation (UEF) regarding the observance of Emancipation Day on August 1 rather than July 31 are being taken into consideration.

Last week, in an article dated Wednesday, October 20, AMANDALA reported that UEF chairperson, YaYa Marin Coleman, had written to the Government of Belize expressing the organization’s objection to GoB’s decision to observe the public and bank holiday for Emancipation Day in 2023 on Monday, July 31, as opposed to the actual date, which is August 1.

Marin Coleman, in an interview with KREM News, highlighted the fact that August 1, 1838, the day when enslaved Africans became liberated, holds great significance for the descendants of those Africans around the globe. As such, she said, having the holiday on any day other than August 1 would be a disservice to Belizeans of African descent.

According to Hon. Kareem Musa, the committee in charge of overseeing the assignment of public and bank holidays has “noted the contribution from UEF.”

Hon Musa said that the committee, which includes representatives from the churches, the Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Ministry of Education, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will be taking UEF’s recommendation into consideration. He also added, however, that if the committee “sees it fit” to change the date, that change would likely take effect in the year 2024.

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