PARAMARIBO: Antigua & Barbuda’s Minister of Culture, Eleston Adams, has urged the region to support the Caribbean Festival of Arts and Culture (CARIFESTA).
Adams also expressed disappointment with the lack of interest for the event shown by most of his colleagues.
“I regret to say that I am disappointed in the participation and support of culture ministers of the Caribbean for the Carifesta happening,” he said. “Culture should be more prominent. If we want to reap the benefits, especially with regard to tourism, each country should have a Ministry of Culture.”
Adams congratulated the Surinamese government, the population and the organizing committee for staging the event despite all the challenges.
“It is an immense and costly undertaking and a challenge,” he said.
Adams praised the involvement and participation of the large numbers of youths in the organization and the festivities itself. He also noted that the region should focus on the benefits Carifesta will have on the long term.
Besides Adams, only his counterparts from Barbados, Jamaica and Curacao attended the region’s most prominent festival of arts and culture, which ended on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Haiti’s President Michel Martelly travelled to Suriname for the closing ceremony at the Independence Square.
At the end of the festival, he was handed the Carifesta baton by Suriname President Desi Bouterse. In 2015, Haiti will organize the 12th Caribbean Festival of Arts & Culture.
Last week, Martelly was the guest of honour at the Saramacca Carifesta Night in celebration of Haitian culture.
Before an audience of several thousand people, internationally acclaimed artists and performers from Haiti, including Ballet Bacoulou, Ticoca, Mikaben and Tabou Combo; took the stage. Martelly, also known as ‘Sweet Mickey’ performed several of his hit songs with Tabou Combo. His fellow countryman, Wycleff Jean, was the main act at Saturday night’s concert in Independence Square.