Former Leader of the British House of Lords and Director of The School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), University of London, Baroness Valerie Amos will be a Guest of Honor at the Guyana Independence Celebration in New York, according to a statement from the planning committee.
The Celebration which takes place from June 4 – 12, 2016 is being held to commemorate Guyana’s 50th Anniversary of Independence.
Baroness Amos hails from Wakenaam Island, Guyana. She was the first black woman to serve in the British Cabinet as Secretary for International Development in 2003.
Baroness Amos was subsequently appointed Leader of the House of Lords by Prime Minister Tony Blair in 2003, a position she held until 2007. She also served as United Nations Undersecretary General for Humanitarian Affairs 2010 to 2015, as British High Commissioner to Austria from 2009 to 2010, and Chief Executive of the British Equal Opportunities Commission from 1989 to 1994.
Guyana’s President David Granger, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, several cabinet Ministers, Guyanese-American Actress CCH Pounder, British-Guyanese singer and winner of “The Voice UK”, Jermaine Jackman, will also participate in the New York celebrations.
Guyana Jubilee NYC festivities will take place throughout the New York metropolitan area, and New Jersey.
Committee Chairman Rickford Burke said that the highlight of the week long program is a Black Tie, star-studded, State Dinner on June 11, at the Sheraton New York Time Square Hotel & Towers at which President David Granger will deliver the keynote address.
New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo; Mayor of New York City, Bill deBlasio; Mayor of the City of Newark, New Jersey, Ras Baraka, Guyanese American Actor Sean Patrick Thomas, British-Guyanese singer, songwriter, Leona Lewis, are among the invitees. Award winning Actress CCH Pounder will be Mistress Of Ceremonies at the State Dinner.
According to the planning committee, the Jubilee Week NYC celebration include an Inter-County President’s Cup Cricket Match at Idiewild Park Springfield Blvd & 149th Ave., in Queens; a President’s Cup Soccer Tournament & Youth Fun Day at South Shore High School Park, Flatlands & Ralph Avenues in Brooklyn; an Interfaith Service at York College Performing Arts Center: 94-45 Guy R Brewer Blvd, Queens; a Symposium on the history and development of Guyana at York College Large Lecture Theater 94-20 Guy Brewer Blvd Queens; and an Exhibition of Guyanese Art, at Aljira Center for Contemporary Art: 591 Broad St, Newark, New Jersey.
June 8 is “Guyanese Volunteer Day.” Guyanese medical doctors, other healthcare providers and Lawyers will give back to local communities by conducting free medical clinics and providing free legal services at various locations in Brooklyn, Queens and New Jersey. A Flag Raising Ceremony will take place at Newark City Hall Square, 920 Broad St, Newark, NJ 07102 on June 9.
Also, a Business & Investment Conference will be held on June 10, at the Harvard Club of New York: 35 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036. Speakers will include Guyana’s Ministers of Business, Finance, Natural Resources, Public Infrastructure, Public Security, Tourism & Agriculture.
The Grand Finale of the Celebrations is a Guyanese Unity & Independence Parade (Mashramani), will take place on June 12 at 11:00 A.M.; commencing at Church & Bedford Aves and ending at South Shore High School Park at Flatlands & Ralph Aves, Brooklyn, culminating in a Unity Concert.