Kulturhuvudstaden

Kulturhuvudstadsåret har invigts. Sametingets plenum representerades av undertecknad tillsammans med vice ordförande Per-Olof Nutti, Mona Persson och Lars Wilhelm Svonni. Vid öppnandet höll undertecknad ett anförande från en scen ute på umeälven. Det var ett lite mer vanskligt uppdrag att hålla detta anförande, dels var det ett starkt eko vid talarstolen och dels lyste kraftiga strålkastare rätt in i ögonen så man blev nästan bländad. Nedan finns min text för genomläsning;

”WE, THE SAAMI, ARE ONE PEOPLE, UNITED IN OUR OWN CULTURE, LANGUAGE AND HISTORY, LIVING IN AREAS WHICH SINCE TIME IMMEMORIAL AND UP TO HISTORICAL TIMES, WE ALONE INHABITED AND UTILIZED”

Royal Highness, Distinguished guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, my name is Stefan Mikaelsson and I am the President of Saami parliament Plenary assembly. I did choose to paraphrase the ngo Saami Council political statement from 1986 which was adopted at the Saami conference in åre in conjunction with the adoption of our national symbol the saami flag. Today the Saami parliaments and NGO Saami council together administrate our Saami national symbols. (Sámieatnan sámiide!)

Already in 1751 our Saami nation was acknowledge in an annex of the border treaty between belligerent countries of kingdom of Denmark-Norway and kingdom of Sweden. And in the Swedish parliament 260 years later was implemented the new constitution where the saami peoples is mentioned as an people of its own.

Today, the Saami parliament is the only legitimate representative of the Saami peoples, and it is the people who through individual performer claims, upholds and defends the Saami culture.

The Saami parliament plenary is represented by my self together with Deputy Presidents Per-Olof Nutti, Mona Persson and Lars Wilhelm Svonni.

Our lands and territories are at the core of our existence – we are the land and the land is us; we have a distinct spiritual and material relationship with our lands and territories and they are inextricably linked to our survival. Once our lands and territories are devastated we jeopardize to loose our traditional culture and to dissapear as indigenous people.

We walk to the future in the footprints of our ancestors”. (Kimberley-declaration 2002)

I would like to thank various saami artists, musicians, handicraftspersons, hunters, fishermen & reindeerherders who have made this opening to be diversed & different compared with the dominating culture. And also for honouring our ancestors & predecessors making our children proud of their Saami origin in the global world filled with its challenges. Thus making it possible to continue transfering the culture to new generations.

Sunshine and birdsinging, that was the Saamiland, and our thoughts goes back to old memories again and again”. (Deatnogátte Nuorat)

On behalf of the Saami parliament I do wish you all very much welcome to Sápmi.

STEFAN MIKAELSSON                                                                                                                         -Sámedikke åvddåulmusj- President of Saami Parliament Plenary Assembly

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