Tuesday 9th August, 2016
ALL MEDIA RELEASE
The Trinbago Unified Calypsonians’ Organisation (TUCO) celebrates the life of Makandal Daaga, who through his massive contributions has significantly elevated and ennobled every single citizen of Trinidad and Tobago within our recent history.
An illustrious warrior, Daaga stood up with the National Joint Action Committee (NJAC) and courageously demanded justice and equality against a pervasive system and culture that reeked of injustice and inequity. Daaga proved a formidable foe to oppression and tyranny. It was under his guidance and leadership, NJAC brought many a wall of privilege, advantage and racism down, opening up opportunities for a people who had been stridently denied access. A singular consequence of opening this door of self-discovery was that it freed succeeding generations constrained by limitations of miserably unbalanced society to create an enduring legacy that paved a new path for Trinidad and Tobago. It was Earl Lovelace who said: “Our history is not of colonialism and slavery. Our history is our struggle against enslavement and colonialism.” Makandal Daaga is one of the soldiers that stood predominate in that struggle and his memory will forever be etched in our national imagination.
Daaga’s involvement and contribution to our cultural landscape must be highlighted. He saw culture as integral to the development of the soul, spirit and mind of our nation and consistently worked towards maintaining that Calypso retained a significant place in our social order. Under his direction, NJAC promoted a number of public events and competitions throughout the years and in so doing helped to create a space for many artistes to thrive especially outside of the Carnival. This is especially so with our youths who are from an early age afforded a space and are fostered with a sense of belonging in our cultural milieu.
TUCO recognized the work of the Chief Servant Makandal Daaga during our Calypso History Month Celebrations in 2004 with the “Chantuelle Award” for long and distinguished service to the promotion of the Calypso art form.
On our journey of development TUCO is thankful to the Chief Servant for the pivotal role he has played and for his substantial vision that Trinidad and Tobago and the world has profited from. TUCO extends condolences to his wife and family and as his spirit returns to the Land of our Ancestors, we bid him a fond farewell.
Those we love don’t go away…They walk beside us every day!!!
Yours in Calypso,
Wayne Mc Donald, General Secretary