Kingston, September 10 – The Honourable Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, has said that the statue of Louise Bennett-Coverley will serve as an inspiration to many Jamaicans. Minister Grange was speaking at the Unveiling Ceremony in Gordon Town last Friday.
“It is a great joy for me to see this woman whom so many Jamaicans see as mother, being elevated both physically and psychologically in the minds of Jamaicans. Miss Lou now has a statue to celebrate her and those who pass by will look up to her for inspiration and encouragement as we continue the efforts to achieve sustainable prosperity for our people,”
the Minister said.
Miss Grange said that Miss Lou can be credited for her role in developing the Jamaican culture and for bringing humour to all through her poetry and other works.
“It was Miss Lou who reminded us that “rain a fall but dutty tough”, that even in good times there are hardships. It was Miss Lou who cast worthy amusement on those who would return from abroad with “no likkle twang”, depicting the many Jamaicans we know who only have to spend “few days a farrin” for them to sound more foreign than the foreigner. It was Miss Lou who brought us closer to that worthy hero of our folk tradition, the indomitable Anancy, emigrating with the rest of us from his homeland in Africa, to use cunning and craft, wit and humour, to overcome the struggles of life caused by a system that sought to devalue and undermine our creative integrity,” The Minister said.
The installation of the statue is part of the Government’s plan to establish Miss Lou Square in Gordon Town, as a fitting and lasting tribute to the mother of Jamaican culture.
Minister Grange thanked all the stakeholders who contributed to the project, including the residents of Gordon Town, the Member of Parliament, Mrs Juliet Holness, Mayor Delroy Williams and other Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation personnel, Miss Lou’s estate and Jamaicans in the Diaspora, particularly those in Canada and sculptor, Basil Watson.