State Minister intends to build on partnership with nationals in the Diaspora


Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Marlene Malahoo Forte, says she intends to build on the partnership with all nationals in the Diaspora, in an effort to maximise their potential in the nation’s economic recovery.
Senator Malahoo Forte, who has responsibility for Diaspora Affairs in the Ministry, was addressing Jamaicans at a community forum in South Florida, on November 12.
The Senator said she was encouraged by the level of enthusiasm and commitment demonstrated by nationals in the Diaspora, adding that this passion “is an expression and real desire to see Jamaica move forward.”
Updating her audience on Jamaica’s progress, the Junior Minister explained that the country is moving in the right direction as developments were being undertaken, resulting in a downward trend in crime. She also spoke of efforts to restore discipline in fiscal management, and developments being forged ahead, primarily in education, as well as other areas of nation building.
She also cited the Government’s commitment to the promotion and protection of the human rights of all its citizens and to the fundamental principles of democracy and the rule of law.
Pointing out that the next National bi-annual Diaspora Conference is scheduled for June 2011, Senator Malahoo Forte said that much work needs to be done before that event, and that the vibrancy of the Diaspora would help to refine the agenda of the upcoming conference. She also noted that the Diaspora Advisory Board would convene shortly to resume discussions in this regard.
Highlighting the Government’s commitment to strategically engage the Diaspora in nation building, the Senator encouraged nationals abroad to develop a web portal, which would form a register for identifying their talents and resources. “Jamaica’s potential far exceeds our problems,” she said.
In her welcome address, Consul General, Sandra Grant Griffiths, called on all Jamaicans to unite and devise concrete plans for the nation to move forward.
“There is no denying the merits of the strength to be found in mutually supportive arrangements being developed by a people united around goals of personal, community and national development, whether at home or abroad,” she added.
Jamaican Diaspora Advisory Representative to the Southern United States, Marlon Hill, also echoed the call for the Diaspora to galvanise its talents and resources in the effort of Jamaica’s national progress.
Some 200 persons participated in the event, including members of charitable and service organisations and alumni groups; corporate and business leaders, and public service officials.
The event was sponsored by the Jamaica Tourist Board, Jamaica National Representative Office, Victoria Mutual Building Society Representative Office (USA), Ocho Rios Miami, Jammin Industries, and Caribbean Ocean Logistics.

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