Dominica: PM Roosevelt Skerrit wishes Emancipation Day

Prime Minister of Dominica- Dr Roosevelt Skerrit, says everyone should come together to pay tribute to their shared history and the enduring legacy of freedom on this Emancipation Day. 

Dominica: PM Roosevelt Skerrit wishes Emancipation Day
Dominica: PM Roosevelt Skerrit wishes Emancipation Day

Roseau, Dominica: Prime Minister of Dominica- Dr Roosevelt Skerrit, says everyone should come together to pay tribute to their shared history and the enduring legacy of freedom on this Emancipation Day. 

Prime Minister Skerrit took to Twitter and extended wishes on Emancipation Day. He said, “On this Emancipation Day, let us come together to pay tribute to our shared history and the enduring legacy of freedom.” 

He said the occasion is the perfect chance to remember the freedom fighters who worked hard for the abolition of slavery. PM Roosevelt Skerrit added, “May this momentous occasion serve as a catalyst for a brighter future where equality, justice, and unity flourish, empowering every citizen of Dominica.” 

He further said that this is the day to celebrate the resilience, strength and courage of their forefathers who fought for their freedom. “Let us move forward in unity to build our nation. Happy Emancipation Day Dominica.”

Trinidad and Tobago reportedly became the first independent country to officially declare August 1, as a public holiday (1985). Emancipation Day commemorates the official end of the enslavement of Africans living in the British West Indies (Caribbean).

 The British Parliament made the official declaration August 1, 1834. This declaration was made to end more than 300 years of enslavement in the region. However, masters forced enslaved people to work for low wages beyond that date and up to the mid/late 1800s. 

According to the United Nations Chronicle, it was in the Caribbean that chattel slavery took its most extreme judicial form. Chattel slavery identified enslaved people as properties (not humans) that may be traded. This system, called the Slave Code, was implemented on a large scale in Barbados, then throughout the Caribbean and North America.

Emancipation Day, celebrated on 1st August each year, holds profound significance in Caribbean history as it marks the commemoration of the end of one of the darkest chapters in human history – the transatlantic slave trade. 

Emancipation is not just a date on the calendar; it represents an ongoing journey—a relentless fight to realize cherished dreams and aspirations. They stand here today as the living embodiment of the wildest dreams of their ancestors, and they pay tribute to their courage and resilience. Their spirit lives on in them, and this day holds profound significance as they reflect on their struggles and triumphs.