Manitoba Lieutenant Governor

Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba

The Honourable Anita R. Neville, P.C., O.M.

Sikh Heritage Month Opening Ceremony

Remarks by

The Honourable Anita Neville, P.C., O.M.

Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba


Rotunda, Manitoba Legislative Building

Tuesday, April 9, 2024, 12 noon

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Friends and fellow Manitobans, it’s a pleasure to join you today to celebrate Sikh Heritage Month.

I acknowledge this beautiful building in which we are gathered today, is located the heart of Treaty One land and in the capital of a province that is the ancestral and present day home of the Anishinaabe, Cree, Dakota, Dene, Inuit and Red River Metis peoples.

Here, in a province dedicated to understanding, justice and opportunity for all, celebrating Manitoba’s many cultures, faiths and traditions strengthens our bonds of community.

Spring is an important time in many of the world’s faith communities. It is natural, as life returns to the fields and forests, to think of the forces that unite all who live and of the values and experiences that provide meaning to life.

This month, which includes the religious holiday of Vaisakhi (VI-SAW-KEE), is both a time for the Sikh community to celebrate and for non-Sikhs to learn about the faith of tens of thousands of our fellow Manitobans.

The strong commitment to community expressed by Sikhs in Manitoba, the joy expressed through music and dance, the achievements in education, entrepreneurship and leadership – all Manitobans join in admiration of these aspects of Sikh culture.

It was only five years ago that the first Sikh Heritage Month was held in Manitoba. Part of that first celebration involved the re-creation of an iconic, historical photograph of Sikh men crossing a busy street in 1908.

It was a very different Canada when those men crossed the street 116 years ago – and Sikhs have played an important role in building the more inclusive, welcoming Canada we live in today.

I look forward to the unveiling on this year’s Sikh Heritage Month creative project to see what lessons there are for us this April.

To all who have contributed to today’s launch and to everybody at Sikh Heritage Manitoba and throughout the Sikh community, thank you for giving Manitoba a month of learning, reflecting and celebration.

Thank you. Merci. Meegwich. Shalom