4 days of mourning

BY KIMONE FRANCIS, Jamaica Observer

Gov’t outlines activities, including ecumenical service for late former PM Seaga.
JAMAICA will enter a period of official mourning from June 19 to 22 for former Prime Minister Edward Seaga whose life will be celebrated in an ecumenical service at the Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity on North Street, Kingston on June 23.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Grange yesterday disclosed details of activities leading up to the State Funeral at a press conference at Jamaica House in St Andrew.

Grange, in an interview with the Jamaica Observer following the news conference, disclosed the ecumenical nature of the service after the newspaper noted the use of a Catholic church despite the late prime minister’s Anglican faith and his strong connection to revivalism.

“We haven’t fine-tuned the order of service yet, but it’s ecumenical,” Grange said, suggesting that representatives of the different faiths will likely play a role in the service.

Earlier, Grange said Government social activities are to be put on hold during the period of mourning, while travel by State officials will be limited.

In response to a query as to why a larger venue was not chosen, Grange said that the funeral, scheduled for midday, was being held at the cathedral because Seaga’s family wanted the service to be held in a church.

The Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity has, in the past, been the venue of state funerals and memorial services for prominent public figures, including former Prime Minister Michael Manley in March 1997.

Seaga’s remains will be interred at National Heroes’ Park.

Flags are expected to be flown at half-mast during the period of mourning, the minister noted, before adding that the former Jamaica Labour Party leader’s body will lie in state in a closed casket on June 19 at the National Arena in Kingston.

The public will be allowed to file past, beginning at 10:00 am.

That same day, both Houses of Parliament will sit in a joint session, starting at 2:00 pm as a tribute to the former legislator, who died on May 28, his 89th birthday, in Florida.

Condolence books will be opened in all parishes at each municipal office at a date to be announced. However, yesterday condolence books were opened yesterday at the Office of the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, and Jamaica’s missions overseas.

Today, through to June 21, condolence books will be open at Parliament

“On Wednesday, June 5, will be nine days after the transition of Mr Seaga and as you all know our tradition is to observe the ninth night. So, the ‘nine night’ will be held in Tivoli Gardens Square on Wednesday, June 5, starting at 7:30 pm.

Grange also disclosed that Seaga’s body will lie in state at the Jamaica Labour Party headquarters on Belmont Road, St Andrew on June 5; on June 7 at the Montego Bay Civic Centre in Sam Sharpe Square from 9:00 am to mid-day and from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm at St John’s Anglican Church, Ocho Rios, St Ann; and on June 10 at Tivoli Gardens Community Centre from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm.

“On Sunday, June 16, as you all know, Mr Seaga was very much involved in sports and he was the president of the Tivoli Football Club and the chairman of the Premier League Clubs Association, so there will be a football tribute to him at the Edward Seaga Sports Complex. This will be the Tivoli Gardens Invitational versus the Premier League All-Stars,” Grange said.

On Tuesday, June 18, starting at 7:30 pm the Little Theatre in St Andrew will host ‘The Arts in Tribute’ in honour of Seaga featuring the National Dance Theatre Company, Jamaica Folk Singers, Tivoli Dance Troupe, and other performers to be announced.

On June 19, a revival table will be held in tribute to the former Kingston Western member of parliament at the Tivoli Gardens Community centre beginning at 7:30 pm.

Three days later, Grange said, a traditional ‘set-up’ is scheduled for Tivoli Gardens Square starting at 7:30 pm.

Candlelight vigils will take place across the constituency, including Fletchers Land, Mid Town and Denham Town.

Labour Minister Shahine Robinson is also expected to host a candlelight vigil in Ocho Rios, St Ann, where the revival community from Watt Town is slated to participate.

“I’m encouraging Jamaicans from all walks of life and Jamaicans across the island to have their own ‘nine night’ and their own ‘set-up’ in tribute to the Most Honourable Edward Seaga,” said Grange.

Seaga’s body was flown home Sunday evening for his final lap in the land he cherished and called home.

The body arrived aboard a Caribbean Airlines flight which touched down at Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston at approximately 6:07 pm and was received by his family, Government and Opposition officials.

Official period of mourning for late former PM June 19-22

Monday, June 3, 2019

10:00 am – 3:00 pm:

Opening of Condolence Books

Office of the Prime Minister

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade

Jamaica’s Missions overseas

Condolence books will be opened at each municipality office in all parish capitals

Tuesday, June 4, 2019 – Friday June 21, 2019

10:00 am – 3:00 pm: Opening of Condolence Books

Houses of Parliament (Gordon House)

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

11:00 am – 2:00 pm: Lying-in-State

Jamaica Labour Party Headquarters, Belmont Road

7:30 pm: Nine Night

Tivoli Gardens Square

Friday, June 7, 2019

9:00 am – 12:00 pm: Lying-in-State

Civic Centre, Sam Sharpe Square, Montego Bay, St James

2:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Lying-In-State

St John’s Anglican Church, Ocho Rios, St Ann

7:00 pm: Candlelight Vigil

Ocho Rios Pier, St Ann (members of Watt Town Revival Church will


Monday, June 10, 2019

10:00 am – 1:00 pm: Lying-in-State

Tivoli Gardens Community Centre

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

10:00 am – 1:00 pm: Lying-in-State

Denham Town Community Centre

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Football tribute: Tivoli Gardens Invitational vs Premier League All-Stars

Edward Seaga Sports Complex

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

7:30 pm: The Arts in Tribute to the Most Honourable Edward Seaga

Little Theatre, Kingston

Featuring NDTC, Jamaica Folk Singers, Tivoli Dance Troupe, et al

Wednesday, June 19, 2019 to Saturday, June 22, 2019

Official Period of Mourning

11:00 am – 2:00 pm: Lying-in-State

National Arena

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

2:00 pm: Special sitting of both Houses of Parliament in tribute to the Most

Honourable Edward Seaga

Gordon House

7:30 pm: Revival Table

Tivoli Gardens Community Centre

Thursday, June 20, 2019

11:00 am – 2:00 pm: Lying-in-State

National Arena

Saturday, June 22, 2019

7:30 pm: Set Up

Tivoli Gardens Square

Sunday, June 23, 2019

12:00 pm: State Funeral

Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity


National Heroes Park

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