Thirty-one years after Walter Rodney was assassinated “there is nothing here (in Guyana) that he fought for, says Andaiye, Member of the Friends of the Walter Rodney Commemoration Committee.
Walter Rodney died in a bomb blast on June 13, 1980. At the time he was outside the Georgetown Prison on John Street, Werk-en-Rust.
Bridging the racially divide and alleviating poverty were among his greatest struggles. He used education as a tool, Andaiye said.
She noted that from a tender age Rodney was politically active in the independence struggle of Guyana.
The absence of Rodney’s works in the school’s curriculum and children’s little or no knowledge of them were the motivation for the Committee to host a learning session for groups of students from the Smyth Memorial and St. Stephen’s Primary Schools for his commemoration celebration.
Those schools were strategically chosen because Rodney attended St. Stephen’s Primary while the monument erected in his memory on the avenue on Hadfield Street, Georgetown, is opposite Smyth Memorial Primary.
The students who assembled near his monument for yesterday’s activity interacted with Committee members but received their lessons on Walter Rodney from two students.
They were exposed to Rodney’s works in attempting to unite people, break down barriers, and enhance the poor.
These lessons are more relevant to today’s society because the country is racially divided and there is a huge gap between the rich and the poor, Rupert Roopnaraine stated.
According to Roopnaraine, on numerous occasions discussions were held with the Ministry of Education to have Rodney’s works in the school’s curriculum but to date nothing has been done.
Some of the books written by him include “How Europe Undeveloped Africa,” “The Groundings with My Brother,” and “Guyanese Sugar Plantations in the Late Nineteenth Century.”
Andaiye described him as “a completely normal human being who liked athletics and parties. He was a bright and hard working student and always utterly committed to changing the world whilst enjoying a party.”
Walter Rodney, a student of Queen’s College, was born on March 23, 1942. He dedicated his life towards the people and was active in Guyana’s independence. During his life he wrote many books. He contributed to history and is a big part of Guyana’s history.
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