Tenth March in Belize City Print E-mail
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Written by Shane D. Williams   
Wednesday, 12 September 2012 00:00

Mayor Bradley speaks at the official 10th September ceremonyThere are a few Belizeans that march through the streets of Belize City every tenth day of September. For them it is the proudest day of the year. On September 10th in Belize, we commemorate the 1798 Battle of St George’s Caye.

On Monday, September 10th, those people came out once again for the 214th anniversary of the Battle. Some Belizeans came from as far as Europe to take part in the march. But first, they visited the new and improved Memorial Park. The project is not completed as yet but the contractors did an excellent job at making the site presentable for a national ceremony. At the Memorial Park, they got to see the coronation of the 67th Queen of the Bay, Miss Yadira Argueta. Immediately following the Queen’s coronation was the tenth parade.

After a single look at the people lining up to march, one could not help but reflect on the theme of the September Celebrations: “Many Faces, Many Dreams, One Goal – Celebrating Belize”. As the parade started, those people marched proudly. They don’t march because they believe that a few slaves and Baymen defeated a unit of the mighty Spanish Army with inferior weapons and sticks. They don’t march because of a battle that lasted a few days with some hours of intense combat. Those people don’t march because of any of the details of the Battle that have come to be subject of scrutiny. Those people march up North Front Street because they know that whether 2,000 canons were fired or 2 verbal stones were thrown, the Battle of St. George’s Caye paved the way for an independent Belize today. Those people march over Bel-China Bridge, on to Youth for the Future Drive and then right into Vernon Street because they know that when the slave masters did not have the intestinal fortitude to say firmly, “Yes, we will stay and defend our settlement,” 14 black men paddled all the way from Flowers Bank to say this is our home and it is worth giving our lives for. Those people march unto Magazine and Cemetery Roads then through Orange Street on the tenth day of September every year to dance and jump up with each other on Albert Street because they still believe, like the Flowers Bank 14 did, that no matter how little neighbourly love exist today – no matter how violent the city has turned or how deep the country is in debt - “this is our home and it is worth giving our lives for.” 

The tenth march ended in the Yarborough area. The trucks from the parade stayed in the area for a while as entertainers kept the crowd dancing. Again, the big hit in the jump up section was the “bombally” rhyme in which the MC shouts   “All ah we da bombally. We noh fraid fi anybody.” Prime Minister Barrow, whose difficulty with back pain is well documented, was unable to march this year. However, his spirit was definitely lifted by the strong nationalistic display that was the tenth day parade. Now when he and his debt review team take on the bondholders, they can remember the “bombally” rhyme and know that all Belizeans stand together on this one and not only are we not afraid but we also “knock down anybody”.

Last Updated on Thursday, 13 September 2012 00:04