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Return to core values, Hanover, custos urges

Published:Saturday | February 27, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Sheena Gayle, Gleaner Writer

WESTERN BUREAU: Jamaicans need to rid themselves of selfishness as it is damaging the core values on which the nation was built, says custos of Hanover, Dr David Stair.

"We must shed the values and attitudes that are not healthy for nation building and return to the core values, such as kindness, which formed the structure on which we operate," Stair said in celebrating the life and work of national hero and Jamaica's first prime minister, Sir Alexander Bustamante, on the 126th anniversary of his birth, on Wednesday in Blenheim.

Stair revealed his admiration for Sir Alexander who, he said, never took a popular stance in his bid to champion the cause of the less fortunate. A similar attitude, said the custos, needed to be replicated in today's society.

"We cannot be insensitive to the suffering of others. We have to unite and conquer selfishness that seem to have taken over our lives and the way we think and operate," urged Stair.

public viewing

Blenheim, the hometown of Sir Alexander, is nestled in the hills of Hanover, some five miles from the parish capital, Lucea. Several storyboards and other personal items of the former prime minister can be found at his old home, which is open for public viewing.

Minister of Water and Housing Dr Horace Chang represented Prime Minister Bruce Golding, and encouraged the residents of Blenheim to foster community pride and honour the legacy of the man whom many simply called 'Busta'.

"His life and legacy must not be forgotten. The struggles he went through for all Jamaicans must be celebrated because he was indeed a man for the people, who was sincere in his bid to help Jamaicans realise a state dignity at a time when it was unpopular to do so."