President of the Democratic Labour Party Verla De Peiza. (Picture by Krystal Hoyte)
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The following Independence message was submitted by president of the Democratic Labour Party, Verla De Peiza.
Fellow Barbadians, greetings. Congratulations to you on achieving your 53rd anniversary of Independence. Long strides were made by our forefathers in the march to reach this milestone.
Several steps have been taken by you as well, as we pave the way for future generations.
It has not all been smooth waters. This past year in particular was a watershed in our history. As a country we wrote a page which ushered in a period of severe austerity from October of 2018 and which is blotted with the blood of our sons and daughters. One of our nation-builders, Sir Lloyd Erskine Sandiford, asked a poignant question: “How did we get here again?” Today, I pose a different question to you.
You see, the Democratic Labour Party is convinced that as a people, we have the fortitude to withstand these winds that buffet us at this critical point in our history. We truly have been here before but this time we need to take stock of the lessons of history to ensure we do not repeat this period again.
I invite you to consider the type of society you want to live in: one where the graphs and indices of economic progress point upwards but our people are left behind as their quality of life diminishes; or one where balance is struck and maintained between the needs of our people and what we are willing to contribute to achieve both our economic and social goals.
This is an image crafted by ourselves rather than one imposed on us. It is the opportunity to till the land – both literally and figuratively – so that the seeds we sow today are fruitful for generations to come.
This is what drives us in the Democratic Labour Party to lead the charge to guard the four corners of our heritage; to shape our landscape for the greater good of our country. We invite you to share and contribute to this idea of hope for the future – a future drawn by you, for you.
Congratulations, once again. And celebrate safely with your families. (PR)