Governor General, His Excellency The Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, has taken his ‘I Believe’ message, which was the theme of his inaugural address in February, to the Jamaican community in the United Kingdom (UK).
Speaking at a reception in his honour, hosted by the Jamaican High Commission in London this afternoon (June 12) after he was knighted by Her Majesty The Queen at Buckingham Palace, the Governor-General said that ‘I believe’ “is a motto that can be internalised by everyone, even the children in the classroom, adults, entrepreneurs, everyone.”
“I believe that in spite of our challenges and our setbacks, we are a nation that has been blessed with a rich heritage and abundant resources. The prospect of a bright future to enhance the quality of life of those around us is quite great,” he added.
Sir Patrick Allen told the large gathering that, his has been a “long, interesting and winding journey” from Fruitful Vale in Portland to King’s House, and to Buckingham Palace. He said his commitment was to inspire and motivate the nation.
“I have given myself to service and to do the best that I can, to help to inspire and motivate our nation to go back to those creative energies that I know Jamaicans have. Jamaicans are a resilient set of people; they will not roll over and die. Although it may seem to many in Jamaica, that this is our night of deepest despair, we know that the night of weeping will not last forever, and I prefer to think that we are approaching the morning of hope with everything before us,” Sir Patrick said.
The Governor-General told the audience that there are opportunities and endless possibilities for Jamaicans to achieve their “God given” potential and succeed despite the odds.
“Our history as a people, as a nation, reminds us to be steadfast, to be resilient and cling to hope, because we have overcome much and we will do so again. I firmly believe that in the crisis of our contemporary experience lies the seeds of opportunity and renewal,” he stated.
The Governor-General also urged Jamaicans to work to repair the ills that threaten to divide and destroy the nation and to have belief in the young people.
“Engage them and have faith that they will not betray the values of fairness, morality and justice that have been instilled in them,” he encouraged.
“We have produced great thinkers and scholars, artists and musicians, the best athletes, sportsmen and women and have ensured that the rest of the world believes in this island nation. Others believe in us, we must believe in ourselves,” he added.
During the reception, the Governor-General and his wife, Lady Allen, were presented with a painting by UK-based Jamaican artist Rudi Patterson, on behalf of the UK Jamaican Diaspora.