EDITOR, The Tribune.
I would like for the government to name the new road between Thompson Boulevard and Baillou Hill Road the Edmund Moxey Highway. I would also like for the Big Pond redevelopment be named Jumbay Village.
The site of the National Insurance Board headquarters is where the original Jumbay Village was located. The scientific name for the Jumbay Tree is “Leucaena Leucocephala”. The tree has many uses and looks similar to a Tamarind tree. The Bahamas is one of the few places in the world where it is prevalent. The Bahamian meaning of Jumbay is spirits. Jumbay Village was supposed to represent the positive and creative spirit of the people.
It is extremely unfortunate that the concept Mr Moxey had for Jumbay Village was not supported. It was supposed to bring tourists over the hill and have a central location for cultural expression of the local people. Today most of our youth do not listen to Bahamian music and do not appreciate enough of our culture.
This happens because there was a long void in emphasis on culture in the Bahamas. Reggae music is popular today because the Jamaican government got involved and pushed it on its people in the 1960s and 1970s. Eventually it ended up spreading around the world.
Jumbay Village could have been the catalyst for the same thing with Bahamian music and culture.
However, all is not lost. The new Big Pond redevelopment could be the new cultural mecca of the Bahamas. It could encompass social, economic and cultural manifestations. It could include a straw market, arts and craft market, fish fry, park, kid’s playground and water features. Most of all it should include a stage for concerts and drama.
Every weekend there should be various events taking place there for both locals and tourists in a safe and clean environment.
We are now on a roll as far as culture is concerned. This trend should continue to grow over time.
This can only happen if we find ways to make profits from our culture. We can also duplicate some of these things at the Clifton Heritage Site, Montagu, Fox Hill, Gambier, South Beach, Yamacraw and throughout the Family Islands. When we do
these things then everyone both local and foreign will know what it means to be “Bahamian”.
July 30, 2014.