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Northern Maya Association to host 6th annual Maya Heroes Day on Saturday in Orange Walk

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Posted: Friday, September 2, 2022. 9:58 pm CST.

By Benjamin Flowers: The Northern Maya Association of Belize (NMAB) is honoring the history and preservation of the Yucatec Maya culture by hosting the 6th Annual Maya Heroes Day ceremony tomorrow, September 3.

The event takes place in Orange Walk Town at the Battle of Orange Walk monument, beginning at 9:00 a.m. At the event, which will have the keynote address by Governor General of Belize H.E. Dame Froyla Tzalam, the NMAB will be honoring vanguards who promote and preserve the Yucatec Maya culture. The two award recipients this year are both from the Corozal District.

There will also be a ceremonial laying of a wreath to honor Maya heroes who died defending their home and their culture from British invaders.

NMAB Vice-President Arturo Cantun, told Breaking Belize News (BBN) that the event subverts colonial propaganda by bringing awareness to the true history of the Battle of Orange Walk. The battle took place on September 1, 1872, between British invaders, who were expanding their territory into Orange Walk while cutting logwood, and the Mayas who lived there.

“What the colonial government did was dedicate the monument to the people of Orange Walk, recognizing the people that took part in the battle as heroes for killing the Maya,” Cantun said. “We use the same anniversary of the battle and instead of honoring the British who claim that they were successful in pushing back the Maya, we’re saying ‘No, this is our story. The Maya were defending what was rightfully theirs.'”

The Governor General is also scheduled to take part in the laying of the wreaths.

 

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