President urges nationwide cooperation for collective development
– At pre-Phagwah celebration at State House
As the country ushers in Holika, ‘Holi’, or Phagwah— the festival of colours, the triumph of good over evil, and freedom from confinement, President, Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali has reiterated the need for nationwide cooperation.
The collaboration of all citizens regardless of differences, he indicated, is key to creating a future that ensures the betterment of all.
He made these statements during a pre-Phagwah cultural celebration at State House on Sunday evening.
Noting that the message of Holi remains constant in an ever-changing world, President Ali encouraged persons to take that philosophy— unity and harmony— and apply it to their lives, and the world in which they live.
He noted too that if persons stay true to the constant principles of Holi, then they will be able to use its values, morals and teachings to shape a world that is different.
These, he said, are values that will uplift, strengthen, and bind Guyanese together, and allow them to enjoy the same levels of happiness.
“This Holi I want us to do it a bit different as a country because Holi is about coming together [as] families and communities. It is about prosperity. It is about freshness,” he pointed out.
The president urged those present to look around their communities to seek out and assist those persons that are in need.
He restated his mission to giving his best for the betterment of Guyana, and encouraged others to give of themselves as much as they could, as well.
“If you do this, I’m convinced that Holi will continue to inspire us. Occasions like these will continue to inspire us on the values and traditions that we have as a people and as a country; values and traditions that are unshakable, values and traditions that are different, and values and traditions that are unique to us because of who we are as a country,” he emphasised.
Further, he highlighted the diverse cultural mix that exists in Guyana, citing it as a blessing and encouraging each culture to adopt a renewed spirit of humanity and align themselves with a common vision for the nation’s development.
“As we play with the colours and the colours merge together, let that merging of colours not only be something that is physically beautiful on a day of Holi, but let it be a physical demonstration of how colourless we are in a very colourful world. If we can understand how colourless we are in the colourful world, we will find greater meaning to life, greater beauty to life. Every ounce of energy we spend on negative things, on tearing each other down or pulling each other down, is an ounce of energy we could have spent on something positive. Let us sacrifice only for the good of our country,” President Ali stressed.
That sacrifice, he stated, will bring about good for humanity, for a stronger and more unified Guyana, CARICOM, and Western Hemisphere as a whole.
“If you want a stronger world, then you must find ways of coming together and not ways of dividing. You must find ways of bridging the waterways and not ways of blocking the waterways. You must find ways in which the trees will blossom and the fruits will grow and not ways in which we knock the blossom out of the trees. That is not a function of a textbook. That is not a function of economic model or a social model. That is a function of the brain, that is a function of the human, that is a function of our own individual ability to think right and do right… And if we do it individually, and collectively, we will inherit the goodness of God,” President Ali said.