Independence message from the Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) follows:
The Guyana Trades Union Congress salutes all Guyanese as the nation observes its 50th Independence Anniversary. Guyana’s Independence was fought for from the time of slavery throughout the period of indenture-ship and colonisation.
In fact, any proclamation that has been delivered by the Crown is as a result of the struggles of every group, and the collective determination of a people who are imbued with the confidence that we can manage our own affairs and determine a future for ourselves.
As all Guyana marks this significant milestone it should be said irrespective of our diversity, challenges and adversity, where together we work, together we achieve.
As we celebrate and reflect on the contributions of our Founding Mothers and Fathers and reflect heavily on the contribution of Forbes Burnham and Cheddie Jagan, the nation is reminded that these men were equally a part of the struggles of organised labour. Burnham was with the British Guiana Labour Union and Jagan the Man-Power Citizens’ Association.
The GTUC takes pride at the nation marks its jubilee in the leading role organised labour played to this end. The Trade Union as the country’s first mass based organisation (1905) laid the foundation in organised collective action for equality, dignity and freedom. Such activism became the catalyst that set in train the change in the various systems that led to the achievement of independence and republican status.
GTUC calls on every Guyanese to remain strong and proud that we have been able to deliver for generations a Guyanese culture. It is a culture we must build one and never lose sight of who we are.
Happy 50th Independence Anniversary.