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JIS News

The Jamaican community in the United Kingdom (UK) on Saturday (Aug. 26) bade farewell to outgoing High Commissioner Gail Mathurin, who leaves London to take up new assignment in Geneva.
The large turnout at the farewell dinner, held at the Holiday Inn Kensington Forum Hotel, included Lord Bill Morris, who said it was a privilege to have worked with the High Commissioner.
“You have made a significant difference in our (Jamaica) standing in this society. You are an exceptional person,” he said before leading the audience in a rousing rendition of ‘For She’s a Jolly Good Fellow’.
“We will miss you very much. We thank you for the many suggestions, advice and support that came from you. Your encouragement, guidance and wisdom were greatly appreciated,” noted Travis Johnson, Jamaica Diaspora Representative for the Northern Region (UK).
Diaspora Representative for the Southern Region, Paulette Simpson, echoed this sentiment, and noted that Ms. Mathurin was also a role model for women.Dale Robinson, Manager for National Commercial Bank, said the High Commissioner has been a source of pride and support for the Jamaican business community in the UK.
Deputy High Commissioner, Sharon Saunders, who spoke on behalf of the Commission’s staff, said that Ms. Mathurin had made a tremendous impact on the office and the Jamaican community at large.
Describing the High Commissioner as a “phenomenal woman”, Mrs. Saunders also praised her skills, technical competence and management style.
In her response, Ms. Mathurin thanked the Jamaican community for their support, loyalty and commitment to Jamaica. She noted that while she was sorry to go, her new role was a culmination of the work she has been doing with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade over the last 15 years.
“As I prepare to leave, I will take with me wonderful memories of the Jamaican community and the Diaspora. Your continued love and commitment to Jamaica is humbling, and I thank you for your continued support,” she stated.
She also thanked the business community and praised the work of the UK Diaspora movement.
“I am pleased with the development of what has been happening with the Diaspora in the UK and what is remarkable is that it is all voluntary. I hope that the vision will continue to grow from strength to strength,” she further expressed.
Ms. Mathurin, who has served as High Commissioner to London since April 2005, will assume the position as Jamaica’s new Permanent Representative to the United Nations and Specialist Agencies in Geneva.