Where is the UNESCO money for Garifuna? – Ramos
August 7, 2015
Where is the UNESCO money for Garifuna? – Ramos

Wellington Ramos, a Garifuna leader based in the United States, claims that money was given to the governments of countries where Garifuna people live to improve their living conditions, but none was dispensed here.

Speaking at a rally organized by the New Democratic Party (NDP) in Sandy Bay last Sunday, Ramos questioned what was done with the money, which he said was donated by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).{{more}}

“Have you all gotten your money yet? So where is the money? Who has the money? Something’s wrong here.”

He also accused other overseas based Garifuna who have visited St Vincent and the Grenadines to meet with the Prime Minister of using the money for their own purposes.

“They don’t report to nobody. They don’t have no accountability. They are living large under the money that our people are supposed to get. Is that fair?

“We will find out how much money these governments were getting and how we didn’t get none out of it. They can’t be using our people to get money and we can’t get none. That has to stop!” he declared.

Ramos, however, promised that money will be distributed to all Garifuna communities once a case being brought against those responsible for Garifuna genocide and injustice is successful.

“They want to continue dividing us because they know once we come together, we are going to bring a case against them for all the genocide and injustice they committed against us. That day is going to come and when that day comes, the money that we get for our people, we are going to make sure that Greiggs, Sandy Bay and all the Garifuna communities everywhere in the world get some of that money,” Ramos told those gathered at the rally.

Ramos and Garifuna activist Joseph Guerrero were here over the past week, holding discussions with the NDP about honorary citizenship for Garifuna in the diaspora — a proposal put forward by Leader of the Opposition Arnhim Eustace.

Ramos said the aim of the visiting Garifuna delegation is not to take away jobs, as there are no jobs here.

“We are we going to take the jobs? Pretty soon I am going back and I am going to carry a job on the plane with me. I will carry land on the plane with me. If I carry a house on the plane will it fit? If I carry land on the plane will it fit? When people talk, they need to think before they talk,” he added.

Two months ago, when Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace announced his plan to grant Garifuna in the diaspora honorary citizenship should the NDP form government, Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves questioned whether the Garifuna would be coming to SVG to take the jobs and houses of locals.

Ramos urged the gathering to put the NDP in government in the next general elections.

“Make sure you put your brother, sister, granny, aunty, uncle, pickney, pull them out of the house and give the NDP the power to become the next government of St Vincent,” he said.

Up to press time, SEARCHLIGHT was unable to verify that UNESCO had indeed given money to the governments of countries where Garifuna people live to improve their living conditions. We will, however, continue our research.

During the rally, some members of the Sandy Bay community wearing red T-shirts with symbols and slogans of the governing Unity Labour Party (ULP), protested loudly by beating pots and pans.(KW)