STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF IJAHNYA CHRISTIAN BY PREMIER OF ANGUILLA HON VICTOR BANKS .
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STATEMENT ON THE PASSING OF IJAHNYA CHRISTIAN.
For immediate release
THE VALLEY, ANGUILLA 28 April 2020 (Public Relations Officer Premier’s Office).
I am moved to make a statement on the late IJAHNYA CHRISTIAN who departed this life yesterday April 27, 2020 after a courageous battle with a deteriorating health condition. As she was in life she moved on to another place with the same calm confidence and contentment that characterized her sojourn on this earth.
The Anguillian community both here and in the Diaspora will remember her for her passion in the pursuit of social justice through her lifestyle as well as her competence in articulating those issues that she held dear to her heart. Our fallen sister was a great patriot — but she also embraced a broader vision for persons of African descent the world over.
Our thoughts and prayers are with her entire family, including her mother; her children; her grandchildren; her siblings; her loved ones; her many friends; indeed the entire Anguillian Community who are mourning her loss at this time.
Born in Anguilla, in 1957 she was christened Carol Patricia Rey. Later, through her immersion in the Rastafarian Community, she adopted the name IJAHNYA. Her surname through marriage being CHRISTIAN. And as a consequence she became known locally; regionally and internationally as IJAHNYA CHRISTIAN.
We are grateful for her life’s work here in Anguilla. Institutionally, she served as a teacher/guidance counsellor; the first Director of the Department of Youth & Culture;
Executive Director of the Anguilla National Trust; as well as a member of many
Government committees and agencies
In the community, she established the Triple Crown Culture Yard as a venue for social
and cultural expressions and development; she published in 1993, a Dictionary of the
Anguillian Language; she also collaborated on other publications for persons within the
community; and worked passionately on the positive development of Rastafarianism in Anguilla and the region.
I believe that Ijahnya will be greatly missed for her contribution to all conversations in
the community on Culture; Environment; Youth; Women; Heritage; Education; Economics; Social justice; Rastafarianism; indeed, almost any topic on any forum she was uniquely capable of bringing value and her very clear perspective to bear. And she
made it her civic duty to participate in any debate or discussion of national importance,
formally or from the floor. Her absence from any such fora could render it incomplete to
the many persons who cherished and looked forward to hearing her opinion.
Ijahnya has touched many lives over the years in ways that will leave a positive mark on
this community. We thank the family of this fallen patriot for sharing her life with us. We
can only imagine the heart wrenching pain you must be experiencing at this time. On
behalf of the government and people of Anguilla and on my own behalf and that of my
wife Cerise and family I wish you all much comfort and support in the days, weeks,
months and years ahead.
May her soul rest in eternal peace!
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