Former President begins series of Climate Change engagements in the US
Former President of Guyana and leader of the Political Opposition, Bharrat Jagdeo, this morning attended the Clinton Global Initiative’s Annual Meeting which addressed a series of global issues.
This year’s Annual Meeting is the twelfth and final meeting and addressed a series of issues, including how the international community can build from last year’s historic Paris Climate Agreement, a statement from the Opposition Leader’s office said.
Jagdeo was invited to the forum by former US President Bill Clinton.
Jagdeo praised the Clinton Foundation for its help to Guyana and said that it was an example of modern forms of global partnership which seek to solve big problems. President Clinton and the Clinton Foundation had been highly supportive of Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS).
He said “The conversations here today are focused on the world’s most pressing issues – things like climate change, global migration, terrorism, stagnating economic growth and youth unemployment. As we listen to each other, we hear again and again about how societies all around the world suffer when leaders move away from evidence-based policy, and instead, forge policy through prejudice. In developed and developing countries, we are seeing how intellectually weak policies are combining with the rise of populist politicians to put development into reverse. The answer to these threats is the reassertion of progressive politics across the world.”
The Annual Meeting opened with public discussions, including between Former President Clinton, Italian Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, Argentinian Prime Minister, Mauricio Macri and the recently-elected Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan.
After attending the CGI, Jagdeo moved to a further set of meetings in New York, focused on international plans to address climate change.
The Paris Climate Agreement is likely to become international law in the coming months after it is ratified by the requisite number of countries. Thus, global leaders are now consulting on how its provisions can be strengthened and global ambition to combat climate change can be increased.
President David Granger joined over 100 Heads of State to sign the Paris Climate Agreement earlier this year, expressing Guyana’s commitment to the fight against climate change.
Mr Jagdeo will then travel to Florida, where he has been asked to be the guest speaker at the Eric Williams Memorial Lecture at Florida University in Miami. The Lectures are conducted annually and it is the Central Bank’s flagship event. The lecture series was initiated by the Board of the Central Bank under Governor Victor Bruce, to commemorate the life and contribution of Dr. Williams to Trinidad and Tobago and the wider Caribbean.
The Lecture in his honour has seen many world personalities speak, including former US Secretary of State, Colin Powell; the former President of Zambia, Kenneth Kaunda; and former Prime Minister of Jamaica, PJ Patterson. Last year’s speaker was St Vincent and the Grenadines head of government Dr Ralph Gonsalves.
Following the engagement at Florida University, Mr. Jagdeo will meet with groups of university students in Florida, and he will also be meeting with members of the Guyanese community in both New York and Florida.