MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica - Chairman of the St James Municipal Corporation and mayor of Montego Bay, Councilor Leeroy Williams is calling for the teachings of National Hero Samuel Sharpe to be included in the literature used in the island’s primary schools.
Addressing the annual floral tribute to Sam Sharpe held in Sam Sharpe Square on Tuesday, Mayor Williams said the time has come for the worth of the St James-born National Hero to be taught to students.
“The legacy which Daddy Sharpe has left us is much too precious for us only to pay respect three times per year. The time has come for more focus to be placed on the work and worth of this great Jamaican. It is my distinct hope that soon and very soon literature that encapsulates the work of Sam Sharpe will become a part of our education system, which will allow our students from an early age to appreciate what Daddy Sharpe did in winning freedom and liberation for Jamaicans."
According to a release, Mayor Williams said literature regarding the work of some of the National Heroes is already included in the Jamaican education and the time is now ripe for the Ministry of Education to make that step and include the “Teachings of Sam Sharpe” in schools before a non-Jamaican does it.
“We already have the teachings of Marcus Garvey…why can’t we have the teachings of Sam Sharpe…Sam Sharpe the Baptist or Sam Sharpe the Revolutionary. I am therefore calling on the Ministry of Education to take the necessary steps to include the teachings of Daddy Sharpe in aspects of the school curriculum. Let us now wait until a stranger to Jamaica make the move to get literature about Sam Sharpe.
“Labour Day 2023 marks 191 years since the execution of National Hero Sam Sharpe who was hanged right here in this square for his role in 1831, making today’s tribute a very important one. As we celebrate the contribution of Daddy Sharpe, I must reiterate the importance for us to remember the legacy of Samuel Sharpe, in his fight for the freedom and rights that we now enjoy….freedom which we sometimes take for granted," the Mayor continued.
"I want to implore the citizens of St James and Jamaica to make a concerted effort to celebrate Daddy Sharpe…not only on Labour Day, Heroes’ Day or in December when there is Sam Sharpe Day but throughout the year.”