National museum to be established in Jamaica

Youth and Culture Minister Lisa Hanna said the museum will be created as part of the Institute of Jamaica (IOJ).

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday June 21, 2013 – The Jamaica government has announced plans for the establishment of a National Museum of the Jamaican People.

Youth and Culture Minister Lisa Hanna said the museum will be created as part of the Institute of Jamaica (IOJ).

“It will be a space where our children will be able to learn the glorious history of this nation and register pride in our achievement and so develop new confidence and self-worth,” she said, adding that it will contain, among other exhibits, the artifacts from “our African Heritage now being stored in the IOJ, hidden from the eyes of the Jamaican people”.

The museum project will begin next month with the first major exhibition ever to be held in Jamaica on the Rastafari Movement.

“Every year, our national museum will consider and address another defining part of our history to strengthen our shared understanding of who we are and the national mission we are embarked on,” she said.

The Culture Minister said the IOJ’s Museums Division has been cataloguing and storing artifacts and memorabilia that tell the remarkable story of the Jamaican people.

The national collection now has more than 17,000 objects, many of which are in storage in the basement of the IOJ building in the capital.

“As we build the economic structure of Jamaica we must also build our national cultural identity in order to give every citizen of this country and every curious visitor to our island the opportunity to trace our history and cultural roots through National Museum,” she said.

Hanna said in the first instance the National Museum will open in Kingston and will give new life to the capital city as the historical, cultural and artistic centre of Jamaica.

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