Entertainment industry professionals recognised at National Awards
Stephanie Lyew, Gleaner Writer
Ten entertainment industry professionals were honoured today at the Ceremony of Investiture and Presentation of National Honours and Awards 2019.
Among the awardees was Dr Alferita Constantia ‘Rita’ Marley, who 23 years ago received the Order of Distinction, today added the fifth highest honour, Order of Jamaica, to her name.
Her second son and the fourth of her children, Stephen Marley delivered a musical selection dubbed the Marley Tribute, which added a nice touch to the programme, having performed the song Harambee, a track recorded by his mother in the early 2000s.
Marley, who was in her wheelchair, could be seen rocking from side to side and mouthing the lyrics of the song.
Meanwhile, the sixth-highest honour, Order of Distinction, was awarded to producers Augustus ‘Gussie’ Clarke and Herbert ‘Herbie’ Miller as well as international recording artiste Sean ‘Sean Paul’ Henriques in the rank of Commander while actor Glen ‘Titus’ Campbell, jazz musician Desmond ‘Desi’ Jones, music producer Patrick Roberts, and members of reggae band Inner Circle Ian and Roger Lewis were conferred with the honour in the rank of Officer.
Jacob Miller, originally of Inner Circle, was also honoured posthumously – his son Taki Miller collected the award on his behalf.
Sean Paul, who according to the Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange, may be the youngest reggae-dancehall entertainer to receive the award.
He along with Campbell got the loudest cheers from the audience as they received their awards.
The Gimme The Light entertainer, who was highlighted for his contribution to the global popularity and promotion of reggae music, said that the moment was surreal to be among some of the best and bravest men and women.
“It means a great deal to be recognised globally, but even more for persons within this country to acknowledge my music as a contribution to the promotion of our culture. I am happy of the steps that I took and thankful to each person that contributed to the work,” Sean Paul said.
“I always try to lead my life in a good way so people can see that example and follow, so hopefully I can continue with those footsteps,” he continued.
Speaking of footsteps, Campbell stayed true to his comedic strut as he collected his award, which helped to lighten the mood at the formal event and set it to a more celebratory tone.
More than 200 persons received national honours and awards today.