‘Time come ohh’

Indigenous leaders demand meeting with Government, police to settle sovereignty issue

THE Yamaye Council of Indigenous Leaders (YCOIL) is putting pressure on the government to meet with them and resolve the long-standing issue of Maroon sovereignty, which sparked outrage last month when residents of Accompong, St Elizabeth, confronted police who were allegedly on their way to destroy a ganja farm.

The YCOIL, originally known as the Maroon Secretariat, is a group of leaders who represent Jamaica’s indigenous peoples. Moore Town Maroons, Scott’s Hall Maroons, Charles Town Maroons, and Yamaye Guani (Jamaica Hummingbird) Taino People of Jamaica make up the Maroon Indigenous Women’s Circle.

While Accompong does not currently have a representation on the YCOIL, they do have a position on the secretariat, and the council speaks as a whole.

Colonel Wallace Sterling of the Moore Town Maroons told the Jamaica Observer in a Zoom meeting that the Government has been waiting a long time to meet with YCOIL to resolve the problem.

“Ohh, ohh, ohh, ohh, ohh, ohh, ohh, oh It’s time to sit down and have a talk. One of the main issues is determining what the Maroons have done in the many years after the treaty was made between the colonial powers of the time and the Maroons, as well as defining the question of sovereignty,” Colonel Sterling stated.

“What were their positions, and what were the Maroons’ positions? Over the previous 280 years, nothing has been spoken or done to modify that stance [and, even if attempts have been made, none of these things have ever been implemented].

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