Independence Special: Jamaica @ 60 & Beyond

NAME OF FEATURE | THE GLEANER | SUNDAY, JULY 31, 2022 4 INDEPENDENCE SPECIAL: JAMAICA @ 60 AND B YOND F ATURE | THE GLEANER | SUNDAY, JULY 31, 2022 announced at this morning’s plenary session of the Jamaican Independence Conference now being held at Lancaster House, that the British Government was “agreeable to the suggestion put forward by the Jamaican delegation for the date of Independence. “This date will be the first Monday in August of this year – August 6, 1962”. The present public holiday held on August 1 to commemorate the abolition of slavery in Jamaica would be dropped, he added. Sir Alexander, celebrating at his hotel tonight, told me: “There was quite a fight between the Colonial Secretary andmyself yesterday, and I expected to have to carry it on this morning. “Fortunately, this was not necessary. We are going back, having sorted out everything that was not already sorted out in Jamaica. I am very pleased about it all. “The Constitution now has been tidied up, and some things I had been anxious to get written into it have now been put in. It is a triumph for me.” Tomorrow, Premier Manley and Sir Alexander will lunch with Prime Minister Mr Harold Mcmillan immediately after the official signing of the Constitution. They plan to leave on Saturday for Jamaica. BRITAIN ANNOUNCES JAMAICA’S INDEPENDENCE London, Feb 9 (AP): THE BRITISH Government has announced that Jamaica will become independent August 6. Agreement on the date was communicated to the Jamaican delegation attending the constitutional talks here by Colonial Secretary Reginald Maudling. The talks began in London last week. They will end today when the conferencemeets in open session to hear the final communiqué. On Tuesday, Jamaican Premier Norman Manley, supported by Opposition Leader Sir Alexander Bustamante, told the conference that Jamaica wants to join the British Commonwealth when it becomes independent. MUST BE REPEATED There is likely to be no opposition to Jamaica’s application which, however, will have to be repeated formally after the conference. It is up to the Commonwealth Prime Ministers to make a decision. Such a decision can be made either by correspondence among the Prime Ministers or during a Commonwealth conference. The British-Jamaican talks have gone relatively smoothly. The basic problems were of an economic rather than political nature. Today’s communiqué will probably blueprint not only Jamaica’s Constitution and how the island is to govern itself but, probably also some directory plan for the country’s finances. This may necessitate another series of economic and financial talks between Britain and Jamaica to enable that country to plan ahead. The new island state, the largest of the 12 British protected territories sprawling across the Caribbean, has a population of 1,667,867 (1960 census) and covers a total area of 4,411 square miles. The capital is Kingston It produces bauxite, alumina, unrefined sugar, bananas, raw cocoa, citrus and citrus products, rum, molasses and coffee. Jamaica is the first of theWest Indies territories to achieve complete independence. TheWest Indies islands, as a whole, were granted independence as a federation last October and a date had been set for the end of May. Subsequently, however, a popular referendum in Jamaica last autumn urged the government to ask for secession. This virtually broke up plans for a greaterWest Indies Federation. Last Tuesday, the greater federation idea was finally doomed. Britain announced it has decided to break up the federation since other territories – Trinidad and Barbados – besides Jamaica had manifested their desire to go it alone. MANLEY: SOON WE WILL BE MARCHING THROUGH Here is Premier Norman Manley’s message to Jamaica on the eve of the signing of the Independence Agreement: “This has been a great and inspiring conference, and when we sign the agreement tomorrow, I feel that we will have unlocked the gate about which I spoke, and soon the door will be wide open and we will be marching through. “I knew from yesterday that we would get the date that we wanted. We will abolish the first of August as a specific holiday and in effect, it will be amalgamated with independence, which will be the first Monday in August every year. “So we mark and distinguish the difference, but preserve a historical connection, which I for one feel is supremely right for us to do. “It is exactly 22 years since I demanded with my party, independence for Jamaica. It has taken a long time; but we have lost nothing, except that it has taken a long time. We have gained an enormous self-confidence and maturity. The whole of this conference – indeed, everything we have done for the last six months – has been an example and a demonstration of that growth and maturity. “As soon as I get to Jamaica I will explain the changes we have made in the Constitution. But I am very glad to say, now that we have completely cleared up the problem of citizenship, as I promised to do, everyone will be satisfied. “We have arrived at a very sensible compromise of the difference about electoral procedure, and at the same time, we have enshrined in the Constitution the rights of the voter under adult suffrage. “Tomorrow will be a great day whenwe sign the report, whichmarks the end of the period of negotiation and the beginning of the preparations for independence, which will now go forward at top speed.” jamaica at ROAD TO INDEPENDENCE AUGUST 6 CONTINUED FROM 3 Sunshine Showdown Boxing Match, George Foreman vs Joe Frazier Sleep hab no massa TRANSLATION: Sleep has no master. (Beckwith) EXPLANATION: Sooner or later you must sleep. (Anderson, Cundall) OLE TIME PEOPLE USED TO SAY ... 1973 ‘KNOCKDOWN’ The referee stops the world heavyweight fight with his outstretched arms as challenger George Foreman walks across the ring from defeated Joe Frazier after the last knockdown at Kingston’s National Stadium last night. THE GLEANER ARCHIVES