Governor-General, His Excellency the Most Honourable Sir Patrick Allen, has called on citizens across the country to unite, re-establish and re-develop community associations, in order to build back the vibrant spirit that once characterised rural communities.
“This is the time in our nation when we must hold hands.We must draw on the positive characteristics that define us as a people,” he said, adding that Jamaicans are resilient and will find creative ways to overcome the challenges facing the country.
The Governor-General was addressing hundreds of residents, including Justices of the Peace, school principals and teachers, and members of the business community, at the Sean Lavery Faith Hall, in Savanna-la-Mar, Westmoreland, on July 8, during Their Excellencies official visit to the parish.
Recalling a true story of a Westmoreland couple who had reaped a large yam from their farm, and instead of consuming it all by themselves, went around to neighbours and friends and shared the yam with them, the Governor-General said that this spirit of community must be cultivated among Jamaicans, so the country can continue to achieve greatness.
“Looking back at their attitude, I believe that this is the spirit that must be promoted. This is the winning, succeeding spirit of Jamaica that we need to cultivate at all times, helping each other, sharing with each other and working together, so that together we can achieve,” he said.
Describing the people of Jamaica as “the oysters of the world”, the Governor-General called on citizens to reject and expunge “strange bodies,” such as crime and violence, the breakdown of the family structure and the departure from core values, in order for the country to aspire towards greater economic achievements.
“We are the oysters of the world and presently have some irritating, parasitic situations affecting us as a nation, which must be expunged. The deeper our despair in Jamaica and the more difficult our challenges as a people, the greater must be our resolve to find a way out, for there is a way out of our difficulties and challenges,” he said.
The Governor-General and Lady Allen were welcomed by the Custos of Westmoreland, Hon. Owen Sinclair.