The Order of Excellence of Guyana, the highest national award of Guyana, has been conferred on the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, at a State Luncheon held in his honour on Tuesday, June 11, in Georgetown, Guyana.
Established in 1970 under the Constitution of the Orders of Guyana, the Order of Excellence of Guyana is limited to only 25 living citizens of Guyana.
Reading the citation after the conferment of the honour, the President of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana, His Excellency David Arthur Granger, stated that his country was pleased to honour President Akufo-Addo “for his dedication and commitment to the Commonwealth, the African Union, ECOWAS, and for his unflinching support for the rights of developing states.”
Continuing, President Granger stated that “President Akufo-Addo is recognised for his invaluable exertions in promoting economic security and stability on the continent of Africa, his steadfast dedication to regionalism, and tireless efforts to promote the interests of developing states.”
Developing countries, the Guyanese President said, look to President Akufo-Addo’s continued leadership and stewardship in the protection of their gains, and in securing their future.
“I congratulate President Akufo-Addo on his investiture, and thank him for his stewardship in his own country, and his leadership in the developing world, and, particularly, in the interests of the small nations of Africa, Asia and the Caribbean,” he added.
Prior to holding bilateral discussions with his Guyanese counterpart, President Akufo-Addo laid a wreath at the 1763 Monument.
The 1763 Monument structure was built to commemorate the 1763 rebellion, also known as the “Great Rebellion”, that occurred on plantation Magdelenenburg in Berbice, Region 6. The plantation was located on the Upper Canje River and was owned by one Madam Vernesobre.
On February 23, 1763, the uprising, that is considered the first true attempt by slaves to fight for their freedom in an organised fashion, started.
During the revolt, a household slave named ‘Cuffy’, also spelt ‘Kofi’, from plantation Lilienburg, quickly assumed a leading role in the rebellion and organised a number of riots against plantations owners. The uprising lasted for more than a year before the Dutch were able to overcome the slaves.
Today, ‘Cuffy’ is a national hero in Guyana. The anniversary of the Cuffy slave rebellion, 23 February, has been Republic Day in Guyana since 1970.