Simon Bolivar remembered
The life, legacy and inspirational thoughts of Venezuelan liberator Simon Bolivar, were discussed at a commemoration ceremony, held on Monday at the Simon Bolivar Monument, Heroes Circle, Kingston.
Simon Bolivar, who died in 1830 in Santa Marta, Colombia, at the age of 47, travelled to Jamaica on May 14, 1815 and lived at the corner of Princess and Tower streets for seven months.
On September 6, 1815, he published 'The Jamaica Letter' in which he expressed ideas about the union, solidarity, security and independence of the people of South America and the Caribbean.
The event, organised by the Bolivarian Society of Jamaica in collaboration with the Embassies of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and the Republics of Colombia, Ecuador and Panama, was held to commemorate the 186th anniversary of the passing of The Liberator.
In her remarks, Director, Bilateral Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Shorna-Kay Richards, said that Simon Bolivar was not constrained by the norms of his time, but advocated "liberation, independence and solidarity as the new modus operandi for the people of the Americas".
"This is the legacy of a visionary who foresaw the integration of a Latin American and Caribbean Community, which is today CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States)," she said.
Richards said it is necessary to highlight the principles that Simon Bolivar "fervently embodied and exemplified throughout his lifetime".
Pursuit of solidarity
"That is the pursuit of solidarity among our peoples, cooperation across all boundaries and perseverance and determination towards hemispheric unity and development," she added.
Charge d'affaires of the Embassy of the Republic of Panama in Jamaica, Enrique Victoria, said the Government of the Republic of Panama has made a commitment to honour the memory of Simon Bolivar.
Victoria noted that the Venezuelan liberator, in the Charter of Jamaica, had prophesied that Panama would be the centre of the American World, a link for communication in Asia, Europe and the United States.
"As a result, Panama has fulfilled The Liberator's plan to inaugurate, this year, the expansion of the interoceanic route," he said.
Charge d'affaires of the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Luisa Gutierrez, urged the gathering to continue to fulfil the dreams of The Liberator.
"His legacy is alive because all his life he fought for freedom and emancipation, social justice, independence, and the respect and happiness of the people," she said.