From the USA STATE Department...

Belize’s Independence Day

United States president Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have sent a message congratulations to the people of Belize on the occasion of the 32nd anniversary of independence on September 21 on behalf of the people of the US.

On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I send best wishes to the Belizean people as you mark the 32nd anniversary of your nation’s independence on September 21.

Our relationship is strong and rooted in the shared values of democracy and cultural diversity. We work as partners to promote citizen security, expand trade and economic growth, and build opportunities for all people. The successful friendship between our two countries sets a powerful example for the entire region.

As you celebrate from northernmost Corozal to southernmost Toledo, I wish the people of Belize a safe and joyous Independence Day.


From Amandala...

BELIZE’S MARCH TO INDEPENDENCE: SEPTEMBER10TH. 1798-SEPTEMBER 21, 2013

BELIZE’S MARCH TO INDEPENDENCE: SEPTEMBER10TH. 1798-SEPTEMBER 21, 2013 Features — 20 September 2013 — by Ismail Omar Shabazz Belize’s first step towards independence began on September 10, 1798 at the Battle of St. George’s Caye. This victory for Belize allowed Belizeans to claim 8,866 square miles of land, sea and rivers from the Rio Hondo to the Sarstoon River.

In 1898, 100 years later, a brave black man named Simon Lamb took up the struggle for independence. In May 1914, Simon Lamb passed away. In the year 1950, the march for Belize independence continued under the leadership of the Honorable George Cadle Price, the Honorable Philip Goldson, the Honorable Leigh Richardson, and others.

In 1954, Belizeans were given the first right to vote. The right to vote was called Universal Adult Suffrage. It is important to note that the period between 1950 and September 21, 1981, many Belizean leaders were arrested, tried and jailed.

The great irony however, is that as we got to celebrate the 32nd year of Belize’s independence, we still have Belizeans who are in the diaspora who are locked out of the right to vote in Belize’s general elections. I trust that both the Government and the Opposition will come together to remove this stigma, and also work on the stabilization of the Belizean flag.

It is important to note at this time, that in 1798 Belize first declared its borders. Also in 1819, Belize first declared its semblance of the flag, Sub Umbra Floreo (Under The Tree We Flourish); also called the court of arms, and which became the national symbol of Belize.

It is also important to remember as we celebrate another independence day that the aforementioned history was established before the country was called Belize and before it became an independent country.