Sun | May 28, 2017

PJ wants Hugo Chavez Academy built in Jamaica

Published:Monday | September 7, 2015 | 9:00 AMDaraine Luton

Former Jamaica Prime Minister P.J. Patterson has called for the construction of a university on local soil in honour of late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez.

Patterson, one of the founding signatories to the PetroCaribe agreement, while speaking at the 10th anniversary summit at the Montego Bay Convention Centre on Saturday night, said the idea for the tertiary facility was one he twice discussed with Chavez.

"We wanted to build in Jamaica - the lands where Simon Bolivar wrote his [letter] of inspiration to the people of the Americas - a tertiary education [facility] that would offer specialist education in the field of language, sports, culture, tourism, environment, maritime training and nursing. Work on the discipline and design has already reached the embryonic stage for what would become now the Hugo Chavez Academy," Patterson said.

"This would expose the sons and daughters of Simon Bolivar, Jose Marti, Toussaint L'Ouverture and Marcus Garvey to develop fluency in language and hone the skills which blend our economic development and different cultures," he added.

Patterson said further, "Despite our financial restrictions, I believe you, the leaders, who gather here can marshal the monetary and academic resources to build an institution of higher learning. Let it stand as an enduring testimony to Hugo Chavez who, in his short sojourn on our planet, did indeed make a monumental difference on which this and succeeding generations must build."

daraine.luton@gleanerjm.com