September 18, 2020

Caribbean stands tall


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Assistant-Secretary-General-of-the-Organization-of-American-States-OAS-Albert-Ramdin-1From The Barbados Advocate

The region has become more relevant and a stronger player in the Americas.

In fact, Assistant Secretary General of the Organisation of American States (OAS), says the region can share best practices with other members of the OAS to strengthen their democracy and governance, especially given that this is not second nature to some countries in South, Central and Latin America regions, as it is in the Caribbean. He made the remarks during a recent press conference as he reflected on the progress made in the Caribbean particularly during his two-term tenure, which comes to an end next July.

“We have a civil service which is well experienced and able to deliver; we have trade unions which are well developed; we have civil society organisations which have demonstrated a track record; we have a relatively good human rights track record, we have demonstrated the capability of overcoming many challenges this region has faced. So the Caribbean represents within the Organisation of American States, almost half of the membership, now that tells you something about what kind of influence the Caribbean as a whole can exert in the works of the Organisation of American States, but in the politics of the Americas,” he added.

With that in mind, he suggested that the 7th Summit of the Americas to be held in Panama next year, is an excellent opportunity for Caribbean leaders to bring to the table, for discussion, some of the key issues that are relevant to this region. Among those issues, he said, are the concerns of natural disasters and how to effectively deal with them; the impact of climate change and sea level rise; as well as the economic vulnerability of small island developing states.

“So here we have an opportunity to exert influence, to demonstrate leadership, to take the responsibility and at some point we will see that it will benefit the Caribbean even more. We have seen a very strong performance of countries in the Hemisphere [and] there is an expectation from other countries and the North American countries, that will lead and will assume that responsibility,” he added.

Ambassador Rambin acknowledged that two decades ago the region was not yet at that stage, but today it stands tall and strong in the Hemisphere and is part and parcel of the decision making process. (JRT)

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