Making it clear that the Enmore Martyrs’ sacrifice remains as relevant today as it was 73 years ago, the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) made it clear that it would continue to honour the legacies of the five slain sugar workers.
This is according to the PPP in a statement on Tuesday, on the occasion of the 73rd anniversary of the Enmore Martyrs. According to the Party, it wants to remind all of the selfless sacrifices of the five slain sugar workers – Rambarran, Pooran, Lallabagee, Surajballi and Harry – and the profound relevance of the incident today.
“In 1948, having been strangled by social and economic hardships, the burdensome “cut and load” cane harvesting system and being deprived of having a union of choice to represent them, sugar workers were forced to mount protest actions after their fair demands were continually being ignored by the sugar producers,” the PPP said in the statement.
“Instead of their demands being met, Riot Police fired on the poor, simple workers, killing five in the process. They died in their quest for a better life for all the workers and their struggles and horrific deaths significantly impacted Dr Cheddi Jagan. On that unforgettable day of their funerals, he silently pledged to dedicate his life to the cause of the Guyanese people and to free them from bondage and exploitation.”
According to the PPP, the late President was fortified in his belief and determination, while remaining unrelenting in his struggle for the advancement of Guyana and Guyanese. The Party noted that having founded the PPP in 1950, Dr Jagan braved incarceration and deprivation of his human rights, never succumbing to the atrocities meted out to him and his followers by the oppressive forces.
“The struggles of the Enmore Martyrs and Dr Jagan were guiding forces during that ominous period when thousands of sugar workers were coldheartedly fired and plunged into economic despair through the politically-motivated closure of estates by the APNU+AFC [A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change] coalition,” the Party said.
“It was also a source of inspiration when the APNU/AFC Government, through its visionless and inept leadership, strangled our people through harsh and unjustified economic policies and when in full view of the world, they shamelessly tried to steal the March 2, 2020 elections in defiance of the will of the Guyanese people.”
When it comes to the present day, the PPP noted that the efforts of the martyrs have imbued in the present generation a profound sense of the value of our freedoms and the need for them to be safeguarded from those with a penchant for totalitarianism and constitutional transgression.
“In the end, truth triumphed and democracy prevailed. Our people and country, despite being challenged, remain resolute and fortified having endured that recent assault on our freedoms. It further exemplifies the relevance of the struggles of the Enmore Martyrs in today’s world.
The PPP will continue to honour the memory of those martyrs so as to ensure their sacrifices will not be forgotten.”
The Party will be conducting a wreath-laying ceremony at the gravesites of the five martyrs at the Le Repentir Cemetery today.