Williams, Eugene extend Kwanzaa greetings

New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams.
Associated Press / Frank Franklin II, file

New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and City Councilmember Dr. Mathieu Eugene on Monday extended greetings to the community on the celebration of Kwanzaa.

“I wish a joyous Kwanzaa to all who begin celebrating today,” said Williams, the son of Grenadian immigrants. “This holiday honors the richness of African American culture and heritage, each day uplifting one of the seven principles of Kwanzaa – the values of unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity and faith.

“As the leader of our country displays his hatred and derision for African nations and launches attacks on many in the Diaspora, it is critical that we take inspiration from Umoja, unity, to move forward with purpose,” Williams added. “On the strength of our great blessings, we can overcome great obstacles.

“Embracing the seven principles in our lives and our communities, let us look to the future with hope and expectation. Habari Gani,” he continued.

Councilman Dr. Mathieu Eugene addresses congregation at Fenimore Street United Methodist Church in Brooklyn during the church’s Black History Month Celebration. Photo by Nelson A. King, file

Eugene, who represents the 40th Council District in Brooklyn, said Kwanzaa is “a wonderful holiday celebration, when we commit to the principles of Umoja (unity), Kujichagulia (self-determination), Ujima (collective work and responsibility), Ujamaa (cooperative economics), Nia (purpose), Kuumba (creativity) and Imani (faith).

“It is a special time for the African-American community to reflect on and appreciate our heritage, and to uplift one another with the purpose of creating a better future for ourselves and our community,” said Eugene, the first Haitian to be elected to New York City Council.

“This year, as we work together to protect our families and friends from COVID-19, I urge you to uphold these values and act with a renewed sense of determination and purpose towards a healthier and more vibrant society,” he added. “Thank you so very much, and may God continue to bless you and your family this holiday season.”

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