MEET LENOX SHUMAN
“As chief and leader of my community I have always challenged the status quo. I believe that successive governments have made it very clear that they do not want to see or encourages strong indigenous leaders. They like them malleable and politically aligned. I am neither. Let me make this very clear, the Liberty & Justice Party cannot be side lined as an “Indigenous Party”. It is not. It is the only party that has no connection to the failed politics of the past. It is the only party that will defend and protect all Guyanese people. It is the only party that will put people before politics”
LENOX SHUMAN, LEADER & PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, LJP.
Early Life: Born September 13, 1973 in St. Cuthbert’s Mission
Lenox Shuman was born on September 13, 1973 in St Cuthbert’s Mission to an Indigenous father, Clifford Shuman and a mixed mother, Bernadette Shuman. When he was a few months old, his parents divorced and his father subsequently remarried to Pearl Ferreira.
He is the last of five children for his mother and fifth of eleven for his father.
He descends from a long line of Chiefs of the Arawak’s of St. Cuthbert’s Mission that predates the formation of Guyana. Known as the Jaguar People, the Arawaks have been known to occupy the coastal regions of South America and the Caribbean Islands and has its roots in the Indigenous identity of Guyana dating back over 30,000 years.
His Father, Clifford Shuman, also a Chief, was born to two Indigenous Parents and at the tender age of 17 was recruited into the first batch of Indigenous servicemen in the Guyana Defence Force who served under Major General Joe Singh.
His mother Bernadette Shuman, was born to English and Indian parents but never enjoyed the opportunity to attend school as she and her sister Jean Ragabeer, were orphaned as children and lived with their Aunt, Stella Rogers. She emigrated to Canada in 1982 and at the young age of 54 went to school and got her high school diploma.
Education: North Georgetown Secondary School
After being successful at the Caribbean Examination Council’s Exam, Lenox Shuman was awarded a Government Scholarship for his performance in 1985 that saw him attend North Georgetown Secondary School
1990: The Shuman family emigrated to Canada, where Mr. Shuman graduated High School in Toronto at Jarvis Collegiate Institute
After high school, he went on to Confederation College from which he graduated with a Diploma in Business and a Commercial Pilot Licence.
As a Commercial and Airline Pilot, Mr. Shuman is one of two Guyanese Pilots to have ever flown in the Canadian Arctic. He flew across Canada, Central America, the Caribbean and also out of Guyana with FlyJamaica.
Family: 2007, Mr. Shuman met Amanda Van Herten.
In 2007, he met his wife, Amanda Van Herten and they were married in August 2009 in two separate ceremonies – the first being a very traditional Indigenous ceremony and the second a conventional wedding. Together they have three children, two boys and one girl; Kaie Hadali Shuman is the eldest, Arwa Koba Shuman is the second, and Emelia Wiwa Shuman the last. They were all given Arawak names in line with traditional Indigenous culture and in recognition of the dying Indigenous Culture of his People. The names translated are The Sharing Sun Shuman, Tiger Heart Shuman, and New Star Shuman respectively.
2009: Returns Home
Mr. Shuman and his father re-established a home in St. Cuthbert’s Mission and he successfully contested the Chieftaincy of his community in July of 2015.
2015: Vice Chairman of the National Toshaos Council
In 2015, he was elected as Vice Chairman of the National Toshaos Council, where he served for three years advocating for respect for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and promoting better governance in Indigenous Communities.
On the National Toshaos’ Council (NTC), with the stewardship of his Colleagues at the NTC along with the APA and GOIP, they were able to make significant progress in shedding light on the plight to the disenfranchised peoples of Guyana. They were also able to move the NTC out of the grasp of the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs and founded a Secretariat for the National Toshaos’ Council (NTC).
Under his tenure, his community was the only community in the history of Guyana to have had a clean financial audit and led a series of firsts that included; transparency in the community’s finances, giving opportunities to young women as heavy equipment operators at Guyana Gold Fields, crafting of a constitution for the establishment of a Sports club, the employment of over 300 people in the community in a variety of fields, the reconstruction of the community’s Benab, the construction of a Log Cabin to promote tourism in the community, an increase by 450% in the amount of candidates challenging the CXC exams and a community where the People and the Laws were respected. Mr. Shuman credited this success to the diligent work of his entire team of Councillors.
Nov. 2018: Announced intentions to run for the Presidency in the next Election
Jan. 12 2019: Shaping Guyana’s Future – Launch of the Liberty & Justice Party
Lenox Shuman, leader and Presidential Candidate of the Liberty and Justice Party delivered his ground-breaking speech at the end of a full programme opening with multi-faith prays (Hindu, Christian and First Nation) and continued with various speeches from LJP members.
Mr. Shuman remarked that his presence on the stage is not because of want but because of a need in Guyana. He went on to address the packed crowd, that he would be giving up his Canadian citizenship as not to be in violation of the Constitution that clearly state that no member of the National Assemble can be a dual citizen.
It was Mr. Shuman’s integrity that revealed the hypocrisy of the National Assembly on both sides and he continues to push forward with common sense initiatives and policies that, once revealed to the public, are immediately picked up by the other parties and touted as their own.
“ As Chief and leader of my community I have always challenged the status quo. I believe that successive governments have made it very clear that they do not want to see or encourages strong indigenous leaders. They like them malleable and politically aligned. I am neither. Let me make this very clear, the Liberty & Justice Party cannot be side lined as an “Indigenous Party”. It is not. It is the only party that has no connection to the failed politics of the past. It is the only party that will defend and protect all Guyanese people. It is the only party that will put people before politics”