Mabaruma Settlement is the 2004 Amerindian Heritage Village
- Cabinet approves $5M for celebrations
Guyana Chronicle
June 26, 2004

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Mabaruma Settlement, Region One, will come alive in September when Amerindians and others will gather there to celebrate Amerindian Heritage Month 2004.

Head of the Presidential Secretariat and Cabinet Secretary Dr. Roger Luncheon at his weekly post-Cabinet Media briefing this week said that Mabaruma is the community chosen as this year's Heritage Village.

He noted: "Cabinet has approved the recommendation of its Minister of Amerindian Affairs, Ms. Carolyn Rodrigues, recognising Mabaruma Settlement Region One, as the 2004 Heritage Village. As usual, a number of activities have been planned including the Day of Sports and the Cultural Extravaganza."

The governing body at its meeting this week authorised the sum of $5M to cover the expenditure to be incurred by the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs and the Regions involved in hosting the main events and related celebratory activities in all of the other 9 Regions.

Amerindian Heritage Day 2003 was observed on September 10 last at St. Ignatius, Rupununi, Region Nine (Upper Takutu/Upper Essequibo).

Among those attending were the Head of State President Bharrat Jagdeo and his Cabinet colleagues, including Minister of Amerindian Affairs Ms. Carolyn Rodrigues.

This year's celebration marks the ninth consecutive year of observance of Amerindian Heritage Month in Guyana. The declaration of Amerindian Heritage Month and Amerindian Heritage Day came in 1995 after the first and former Minister of Amerindian Affairs Vibert De Souza requested that there should be some form of official observance by Amerindians to reflect their rich history.

Several Amerindian communities will stage individual observances during the month. These activities are carefully planned so that there is no overlapping of events by other nearby communities.

Government, when it took Office in 1992, had as one of its priorities a development programme for Amerindians.

Amerindians have benefited significantly in all sectors from resources of the present Administration. Among these are ongoing projects such as the Revision of the Amerindian Act, a massive birth certificate programme and the land demarcation and extension programmes.

As part of the general objective to promote and highlight Amerindian culture, a village is designated "Heritage Village" every year.

Last year, responding to community representation, Cabinet had approved September 10, a Regional holiday in Region Nine.