Church leaders in Grenada are calling on the authorities to stop observing October 25 as a public holiday. The holiday commemorates an event that led to the downfall of the country’s first left wing administration.
A committee established by the Conference of Church Grenada (CCG) has submitted a number of new recommendations for consideration by the public as it sought to bring closure to the events of October 19 and 25, 1983.
Holiday honors those killed
October 25th is a public holiday to honor those killed after the United States sent troops to the island in 1983. On that date President Ronald Reagan sent US troops to quell a revolt that begun within the People Revolutionary government. The revolt led by the extreme leftists in the government resulted in the death of then Prime Minister Maurice Bishop and others on October 19th.
A CCG statement noted that following the Thanksgiving Service in October 2015 the Conference expressed its concern to the Committee of Social Partners. The concern was that the traditional week of events organized by the National Celebrations Committee did not contribute to healing the nation.
Week of Remembrance recommended
Committee member, Rev Dr. Osbert James, said the CCG has offered to lead the public debate on the recommendations. One of the recommendations stipulate a week of Remembrance and Thanksgiving that runs from October 19-25.
The public holiday would no longer be fixed for October 25, but on the Monday between and including the 19th and the 25th.
It has also been recommended that during the week October 19-25, a vigil should to be held with the names of all those that were killed on Oct 19 and 25 called.