Media Center



August 3, 2021 - Washington, DC

Mr. Secretary General
Assistant Secretary General
Distinguished Representatives and Alternate Representatives
Members of the General Secretariat
A very good morning to you all.

It is an honour to be appointed Permanent Representative of Guyana to the Organization of American States. I am grateful and very humbled by the confidence reposed in me by our President of Guyana, His Excellency Dr. Irfaan Ali and thank him for this opportunity to serve Guyana. I am very new to diplomatic service. Before entering the political arena, I worked for twenty-five years as a Chemical Engineer, and in this respect, I hope that I can count on the guidance of colleague Permanent Representatives and support of the General Secretariat in the successful execution of my mandate.

My appointment comes at a critical time when the OAS and hemisphere, and indeed our whole world are confronted with the adverse and multiple impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the most unprecedented challenge of the 21st century. Consequently, Guyana, like other countries is faced with severe health and socio-economic challenges that threaten the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals and are exacerbated by the effects of the existential climate threat - common to low-lying coastal states like mine. My own country, as you know has been adversely impacted by the extensive 2021 flooding which was declared a national disaster on June 7th by President Ali. The Government and people of Guyana are grateful to the international community for standing with us in solidarity in the wake of this crisis.

International cooperation and solidarity between states are most critical and must remain at the forefront of global efforts to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic. I would like to acknowledge the efforts of the OAS including those of vaccine advocacy and fostering partnerships to address the persistent health and socio-economic consequences of the pandemic, facing the peoples of the Americas. In this respect, Mr. Secretary General, I commend you in your role as head of this organization and the Members of the OAS Permanent Council, particularly those constituting the CARICOM group that initiated and endorsed on February 17th, the Resolution on Equitable Distribution of COVID-19 Vaccines that was adopted by acclamation. Additionally, Guyana thanks most sincerely and expresses its profound appreciation to Colombia for its recent most generous and timely financial donation to save Caribbean lives and livelihoods from this dreaded virus.
Guyana values multilateralism and looks forward to the enhancement of relations with the Member States of the OAS and fostering cooperation with them in areas that support human development; overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic; the fight against the existential climate threat; disaster mitigation; and energy resilience. In this context, Mr. Secretary General, I take the opportunity to commend you, for your role in advocating for the interests of developing countries like mine, in particular your present efforts in the context of the Framework Strategy Document, from Vulnerability to Resilience and its accompanying action plan.

In this vein, following the successful hosting on May 27th of the Virtual High-Level Meeting of CARICOM Ministers responsible for Energy with representatives of IFIs, bilateral development partners and the Private sector, I am confident in the strong foundations laid for future collaboration to address CARICOM’s Energy Financing, Energy Security and Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency priorities.

Allow me, Mr. Secretary General and distinguished ladies and gentlemen, to reiterate the Government of Guyana’s firm commitment to upholding the principles on which the OAS was founded as enshrined in its Charter - guiding democracy, human rights, multidimensional security and integral development in the hemisphere. Similarly, I reiterate my Government of Guyana’s unwavering commitment to rule of law, the promotion and protection of fundamental human rights, support for the principles of good governance and equitable and inclusive sustainable development, all of which are critical to peace and stability, nationally and internationally. In light of my Government’s commitment to upholding the principles of democracy and rule of law, I take the opportunity to reiterate its sincere appreciation for the support received from the Secretary General for the March 2, 2020 General and Regional Elections during its stalemate.

Mr. Secretary General, I now have the honour to present you with the letter by which the Government of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana accredits me as Guyana’s fifth Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States.

I thank you