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Nov 6, 1998

Garifuna Settlement Day activities announced

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Plans for this year’s National Garifuna Settlement Day are well underway. The celebration which commences on Sunday, November eighth, will consist of daily activities that include the traditional events, like the Garifuna pageants and the re – enactment. But Matthew Martinez, the President of the Belize Branch of the National Garifuna Council, says while there will be much to celebrate, this year the party mood will be overshadowed by the recent destruction caused by Hurricane Mitch, that resulted in the deaths of many Garinagus in Central America.

Matthew Martinez, Pres., Bze. Branch, Nat. Garifuna Council

“Yes, we should look forward to many activities here and in Belize City and countrywide, but yes it will be bigger and better than in the years past but also we will be celebrating. During our celebration we will also be mourning. The reason is, we are mourning because of the effects of Hurricane Mitch in our neighboring Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua. Many of our Garinagu brothers and sisters died and lost many of their belongings and properties during that disaster. So here in Belize, the Garinagu here in Belize, share great sentiment with our brothers and sisters in Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua.

Some of the activities that will be taking place in Belize City, we will be having the Miss Garifuna, the traditional Miss Garifuna Pageant which will be held on the ninth, Monday the ninth of November at the Holy Redeemer Parish Hall at seven thirty p.m. Wednesday we will be having the solidarity mass, that’s also a traditional mass, where we will have all the Garinagu priests coming and celebrating this mass. And the main celebrant for this mass will be Reverend Bishop O.P. Martin.”

Martinez says proceeds from all activities will go towards the hurricane relief Fund. Martinez says the National Garifuna Council is also looking at setting up a relief program of its own to help out the victims of Hurricane Mitch. Financial donations as well can be deposited in Belize Bank account, number 6754, at any of the bank’s branches throughout the country.

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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