Jamaica at 60 St Ann

DELROY HENRY, BAMBOO At Bamboo we met farmer Delroy Henry chilling out in a bar. He had a placid countenance and a low voice, but he had much to say when the subject was broached. “Right now, mi no see no Independence you know, for right now, all we do is depend pon dem, especially the United States, so we no independent. No sah! We can’t celebrate and dem no check pon the farmer. Dem no check pon the homeless, so we no independent. “For right now, we would have to have our vineyard a run, house a build. And we shouldn’t have any homeless, yuh know. Everybody should be quite contented. And we borrow too much, too. And another thing is fraud. Dem call it corruption, but a thief me call it.” DONOVAN WHITELY, LUMSDEN We chanced upon Donovan ‘Kip It Clean’Whitely, an artiste (singjay), at Lumsden crossing, from where a great house could be seen perched on a hilltop. He said, among other things, “From 1962 until now, I don’t see where Jamaica is independent for we still affi tek orders from colonial masters. We shouldn’t be ruled by a governor general. We shouldn’t be taking any order from no queen. So, Jamaica is not independent, for if Jamaicadid independentwewouldn’t have tobe takingorders anddepending on other countries,”he explained. “But, a document was signed to say in fact we are,” he was told. “That’s what dem say, for all now we no get back no reparation money, like other countries. What about we? What about Jamaica?” he asked. “We are managing on our own,” was the response, which he countered with, “We cannot run the country off our own.” As for the celebrations, he was just as cynical. “Jamaica is not independent, so I don’t see where the celebration is relevant,”he declared nonchalantly. Yet, if given the opportunity he would perform at a celebratory event. “Yes, to perform at a stage show, yes, but not to celebrate Independence,” he shared. ROSETTA BAILEY, LUMSDEN Also at Lumdsen, we got hold of Rosetta Bailey just as she alighted from a taxi to start a one-mile trek to her home. The 77-yearold mother of nine children alive could not afford the extra funds to pay for the leg of the journey to New Fine, where she has been living since 1961, walking to and from Lumsden square sometimes in the broiling sun. Jamaica 60 celebrations will not change 61 years of hardship, so she is not anticipating any of it. However, she said, “Yuh see Independence Day now, mi must siddung a yard, and everybody just carry it come throw pon mi, money, food, blessing, and everything.” ‘TIGER’, BROWN’S TOWN ‘Tiger’, as he preferred to be called, was sitting on a store piazza in Brown’s Town when The Gleaner approached him. He scoffed at the whole notion of Jamaica’s political Independence for “the people dem nuh have no freedom, dem no independent … Whole a we ina the slave yard right now … a wait pon anything the big man say wi fi duh”. The independence thing anno fi Jamaicans … the people dem affi start mek tings fi dem self, mek things to sell a foreign, an demway deh, but we can’t a depend pon the white man sinting all the time …Me no celebrate no holiday fah dem no mean nothing to mi … mi no ina dat. And as for his personal independence? “Me cannot be independent and deh among the slave dem too,” was his terse response. RAY GOLDBOURNE, HIGH ROCK At a cookshop spot called ‘High Rock’ on the way between Bamboo and Brown’s Town, we came upon people who were engaged in a discussion about cheating and ‘giving bun’. The Gleaner team changed the topic to Jamaica 60, but the utterances about it were just as impassioned. Chef Ray Goldbourne did not leave the heat in the kitchen. “As far as me see Jamaica is not moving forward towards Independence, him a move backwards, because right now everything don’t own by Jamaica. Most business in Jamaica not owned by a Jamaican. So, how can you be independent. In what way? What we have that we can be independent about? We are dependent, depending on somebody to live.” Yet, he continued emphatically, “The Queen not doing anything for Jamaica. Anything at all, England don’t do anything for Jamaica, fi say alright, we under The Queen and we a get help from under The Queen. You can tell me one thing England is doing for Jamaica right now? – Paul H. Williams NAME OF FEATURE | THE GLEANER | MONDAY, JUNE 27, 2022 15 THE ISSUE of Jamaica’s political Independence is one of our hot-button topics. A conversation about it is always very heated and impassioned, and so in our monthly Jamaica 60 parish supplements, we are gauging how people really feel about our Diamond Jubilee milestone and its related celebrations. This month it is the people of St Ann’s turn to opine. jamaica AT | ST ANN VOX POP 1. Santa Gloria. 2. Juan de Esquivel. 3. 1860. 4. The Garden Parish. 5. Dry Harbour Mountains. 6. Chigwell. 7. Marcus Mosiah Garvey. 8. Trelawny, St Catherine, Clarendon and St Mary. 9. False. 10. Who is the mayor of St Ann’s Bay? 11. Who is the custos of St Ann? 12. Eight Rivers. 13. Middlesex. 14. Charles Drax, a planter who willed the property for the setting up of a free school. 15. St Hilda’s High School. 16. Nine Miles. 17. Aboukir. 18. Headquarters of Zion Revivalism 19. Sturge Town. 20. Dr No. ANSWERS TO ST ANN TRIVIA JAMAICA AT 60: ST ANN