As the country observes Emancipation Day Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller says Jamaicans must acknowledge the uncomfortable truths and find solutions to them.
She says as Emancipation leads into Independence, Jamaicans should reflect on the road already travelled and rise to meet the challenges of the future.
She is encouraging Jamaicans to get swept up in the spirit of emancipation, freedom and liberation.
Simpson Miller wants Jamaicans to lay a wreath at, or visit a heritage site associated with slavery and emancipation and sing songs of freedom.
Meanwhile, opposition leader, Andrew Holness says while Jamaicans relive the emotions of our ancestors, as they celebrated their new found freedom on this historic day, they must never forget the lessons learnt.
He says there is much to be done to protect and enhance the future of Jamaicans.
According to Holness, Jamaica must improve education and training, strengthen the justice system and rid the society of corruption, crime and dishonesty.