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Aug 3, 2021

Changing the Legacy of Slavery

Nigel Encalada

Outside of getting communities more involved, it’s about changing the “crab-in-a-barrel” mentality. Director of the Institute for Social and Cultural Research, Nigel Encalada says that it is time for all persons, including those of afro-descent, to take their place as leaders at all levels of society. 


Nigel Encalada, Director, Institute for Social and Cultural Research

“One of the legacies of slavery is a sort of self-hate. As individuals within our society today, one of the reasons there is destruction is because there is self-hate and that will result in the destruction of others. But one of the reasons we don’t aspire to leadership either – don’t get me wrong; we have many people who are afro-descendant who have been leaders. But we need leaders in every sector. We need leaders at the social level, at the economic level, at the political level and we have made certain strides in some particular areas. But, like with everything else, you need checks and balances. And you have said it right, there is a need for afro-descendant people to take our place, take your place. It is not a thing where you are competing or trying to play down the role of other people, but if we see what’s going on in the world, there is a place of positivity, there is a place of impact and Belize is waiting for that to happen. When that happens in Belize, you will see a country that will develop. Whether we know it or not, afro-descendant communities and culture influences the whole country and other cultures – new, immigrant or whatever – all of us have a history of being here and we influence each other. So when one group is able to assert and show that we can lead in meaningful ways, it become an example for others.”


On Wednesday, the Heritage Education Network Belize will be hosting a Facebook live event named Let’s Talk Emancipation. The month-long activities conclude on August twentieth with a visual arts competition entitled, “Emancipation and the Freedom of the Creation Mind.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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