The Official National September Celebrations Launch was held in Orange Walk Town on Sunday. The event officially starts the celebration of the 219th anniversary of the Battle of St. George’s Caye and the country’s 36th anniversary of independence, under the theme, Belize – “Confronting Challenges! Celebrating Triumphs! Renewing Our Resolve!.” The event was held in the northern municipality as part of changes being made to the September traditions. His Excellency Sir Colville Young, Governor General of Belize, conducted the inspection of the Belize Defence Force Guard of Honour. Speaking at the opening ceremony were Orange Walk Town Mayor Kevin Bernard and Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber.
Mayor Kevin Bernard
“My message here is one that I send out on a daily basis and it is as pertinent today as always. It is a message of unity and tolerance. As a young nation, we can no longer afford division along any lines. We must learn that it is ok to be different and to think differently. I ask you all to struggle against the challenges of division because if we are divided we will never grow as a people or as a nation. This September, and all other days, let us hold close to heart, the many accomplishments and triumphs we have seen and let us strengthen our resolve to unite against our challenges.”
Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber.
“Planning and the coordination of this year’s activities reflect a true collaborative effort in which our municipalities have assumed an even greater role. I am proud that for the first time this launch, the National Song competition as well as the National Flag Day ceremonies are being hosted by municipal bodies all over the country. Mr. Mayor I want you to know that I am particularly pleased that in fact on this very first occasion of us moving the launch around that it is here in Orange Walk Town; I think that shows indeed the great collaboration that our theme and that you just spoke about a while ago. I therefore note with great gratitude the work of all our mayors and municipal representatives and local committees that have demonstrated their capacity to actively engage with us in this collective process of nation building. This is a signal my friends to the nation that our democracy is alive.”
This year the National Song Competition was held last month in Dangriga.