Ahead of his departure from Washington for London, Jamaica’s outgoing Ambassador to the United States and Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States (OAS), His Excellency Anthony Johnson, expressed satisfaction with helping to deepen relations between Jamaica and both the United States and the international community.
Ambassador Johnson is also savouring the outpouring of tributes to him and Mrs. Johnson from Jamaicans in the Diaspora, as well as the international community.
Among those organising farewell functions for him as he wrapped up his diplomatic assignment in the U.S. after 26 months, were the Jamaican community, including the staff of the Embassy in Washington, D.C.; the Jamaica Nationals Association; the Jamaica Women of Washington; the Jamaican Association of Maryland; Women at Real Risk; Jamaica Trade Council of Greater Philadelphia; Caribbean Trade Council of Hartford; West Indies Social Club of Connecticut; CARICOM Caucus of Ambassadors in Washington, D.C; US State Department; and the 34-member Organization of American States (OAS).
Jamaica’s outgoing Ambassador to the United States, H. E. Anthony Johnson, receives a token from Chairman of the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS), US Ambassador Carmen Lomellin, during a reception held in his honor at the Marcus Garvey Hall of Culture at OAS Headquarters.
At a special sitting of the Permanent Council of the OAS, Ambassador Carmen Lomellin, who is Council Chair and US Ambassador to the OAS, declared that Ambassador Johnson has played a critical role in facilitating negotiations of sensitive topics that allowed member states to arrive at consensus.
She said Ambassador Johnson’s thorough grasp of policy and political matters, “combined with his ability as a skilled diplomat and orator and fuelled with the knowledge of a historian”, proved to be an invaluable asset to the Council, in bringing together representatives from different sub-regions.
“The Council wishes to register that your presence and contribution will be missed in this body. We wish you all the best in your future endeavours,” she said.
Dean and Chairman of the Caribbean Caucus of Ambassadors, Ambassador of St. Kitts and Nevis, H.E. Izben Williams, noted that Ambassador Johnson joined the ranks of the Council with a wide range of experience in politics, media, academia and the private sector.
Jamaica’s outgoing Ambassador to the United States, H. E. Anthony Johnson (centre), poses for a photograph with members of the CARICOM Caucus of Ambassadors after a luncheon reception they gave in his honor at the Sequoia Restaurant in downtown Washington, D.C., on Friday (April 30).
“It is this background that he brought to bear on the affairs of the Council and this Organization on behalf of his country. It is this resourcefulness that we will be deprived of,” he said.
“We have all noted the passion and imperative which Ambassador Johnson brought to ensure our urgent response to the needs of Haiti in the aftermath of the earthquake, and his role in organising the memorial service for the victims of the earthquakes in Haiti and Chile, which was held at the OAS,” Ambassador Williams said.
In his response, Ambassador Johnson shared some perspectives on how the OAS could improve by examining itself to determine if its original goal of “peace-keeper” among the countries “south of the border”, should continue as its main focus.
Minister of State in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Senator the Hon. Marlene Malahoo Forte, bids farewell to the outgoing Jamaican Ambassador to the United States, H.E. Anthony Johnson (left) and Mrs. Johnson (second right), during a reception held in their honor on Wednesday (April 28), in the Chancery of the Jamaican Embassy in downtown Washington DC. At right is the Community Relations Attach