Gov’t hosts 1823 Bi-centennial festival with focus on African tradition, history

The first 1823 Bi-centennial Cultural Festival which was hosted by the government through the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, is making headway in highlighting African history and traditions.

The one-day event, which was held at Lamaha Promenade, Georgetown on Saturday saw a number of persons displaying African arts and craft including clothing, accessories and paintings, as well as food and drinks among other items.

Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal engaging exhibitors at the festival

Present at the event was Minister of Housing and Water, Collin Croal, who engaged  exhibitors.

“This is another initiative by the Government of Guyana and here it allows one to explore the African tradition and their history. In all the ethnic groups, we have a history and that history, when fused together is what makes Guyana unique and correlate with our motto; one people, one nation, one destiny, and ultimately striving for one Guyana,” expressed Minister Croal.

Donette Cummings, one of the exhibitors

Meanwhile, Designer Donnette Cummings who was displaying her African clothing expressed how grateful she was for the exhibition. She noted that she looks forward for it to become an annual activity.

“This event is a wonderful event and these are things that people look forward to. Guyana is becoming a developed country. And so, we are looking forward to more activities where we can meet more people like ourselves,” stated Cummings.

One of the exhibitors showcasing African dolls

Hanani Lewis of a steel pan band applauded the initiative and said the government has been making headway in honouring each of its ethnic groups.

“It is nice to honour the past and reflect upon the bravery of those former enslaved persons who fought for their freedom. The steel pan is an instrument born out of the ingenuity of former enslave people and so I really applaud this initiative,” the steel pan enthusiast underscored.

Monette VanDecruze, an overseas-based Guyanese exploring the festival

Monette VanDecruze, an overseas-based Guyanese, who visited the event was extremely impressed with the quality of service that she received and the well-sewn clothing and the finest hand-made accessories.

“To see something of this calibre tells me that Guyana definitely is going in the right direction. And if these items that are on display are homemade, then it’s real interesting to see where Guyana is going and how far it has come,” an excited VanDecruze told the Department of Public Information (DPI).

African clothing on display