Independence Day messages - Still a blessed and rich nation

Published: Thursday | August 6, 2009

Sir Patrick Allen

Fellow Jamaicans at home and abroad, I greet you on the commemoration of the 47th anniversary of our Independence. As we reflect on the past and celebrate, let us remember that the true meaning of independence must evolve from each Jamaican. It should be determined by our collective dreams and hopes for our nation, and the kind of society we envision for successive generations and ourselves.

I believe that true independence exists when we are not subject to the control of others, when we do not entrust the shaping of our destiny into the hands of others, who would seek to dictate how we govern and conduct our affairs.

In spite of our challenges and setback over the past 47 years, we are still a blessed nation, rich in heritage and abundant in resources. We have much for which to give thanks.

There are some in our society who are proud of the achievements of our country since we gained independence in 1962, while there are others who question whether we are ready to chart our own destiny.

Time for rebuilding

These are examples of what is right with Jamaica and should be replicated everywhere.

We need to seize the moment now and have each citizen pledge to participate in the healing, restoration and ultimate prosperity of our country.

I believe we should use our independence and our natural and human resources to build a quality society where values are upheld and good attitudes prevail. Today, we stand at a crossroad in our national life. There are challenges ahead of us. As we go into another year of self-rule, we must believe in Jamaica and that together as one nation under God we can "accomplish what we will".

Sir Patrick Allen

Governor General