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UEF commemorates Haitian Flag Day in Belize

HighlightsUEF commemorates Haitian Flag Day in Belize

Photo: YaYa Marin Coleman educating young Belizean primary school students on Haiti Flag Day

by Kristen Ku

BELIZE CITY, Wed. May 15, 2024

For the second year in a row, the United Black Association for Development Education Foundation (UEF) will be commemorating Haitian Flag Day in Belize. The commemoration will take place this year on Saturday, May 18.

Officially created in 1803, the flag originated from the French colonizer’s red, white, and blue flag. They revamped it, excluding the white and joining the blue and red, which represent the black and mulatto populations in Haiti, respectively. This served as a symbol of defiance against French colonial rule and unity among the Haitian people.

Last year, the chairperson for UEF, YaYa Marin Coleman traveled to Belmopan, where she stood in front of the National Assembly Building waving her flag in acknowledgment of the shared struggles and triumphs of Caribbean countries.

However, this year, she plans to visit the Michael Finnegan Market in Belize City. “UEF action this year — because you know that I am on the front line — I’ll go to the market for an hour and walk up and down with this flag and give Belizeans an opportunity to tell me what they know about Haiti, and to ask me questions and have me share about it,” she said.

(l-r) Kremandala staff member, Raymond “Jen” Flowers, and UEF chairperson, YaYa Marin Coleman in solidarity with the Haiti Flag

Many Belizeans’ most recent recollection of anything concerning Haiti has been the news of the possible deployment of our troops, along with those of other Caribbean countries, to quell the violence of Haitian gangs who have taken over the country.

While some see this as heroic, UEF strongly condemns such acts. “How will we agree to go fight and kill our black people? There’s no way. And so, every time, UEF will come out hard for the interests of Afrikan people. We believe in solidarity, not just in talking, but in action,” she added.

This year’s list of demands towards the US Government includes 5 things:

  1. Stop using US tax dollars to fund the brutal Haitian police and affiliated death squads.
  2. Stop the flow of weapons from the US to death squads in Haiti.
  3. No more foreign intervention. End the occupation.
  4. Stop attacking and deporting Haitian refugees.
  5. Sovereignty and self-determination for Haiti. Notably, Coleman was able to reach her first audience today, as a group of young students from a local primary school passed by Kremandala’s building. She not only educated them on Haiti Flag Day, but also used that time to encourage them to embrace the fact that they are “Young, Gifted, and Black” students.

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