President Ali receives UWI American Foundation Legacy Award

The content originally appeared on: INews Guyana

President Dr Mohamed Irfaan Ali, championing a robust Caribbean identity, has urged the region to actively embrace and value its unique culture and abundance of resources.

He delivered this call to action after receiving the prestigious Legacy Award Class of 2024 at the American Foundation for the University of the West Indies’ 27th Annual Awards Gala in New York on Thursday.

The president was commended for his unwavering commitment to nation-building and hailed as a regional cooperation ‘champion’ by Guyanese-born American actress, CCH Pounder.

In his remarks, the head of state spoke of the enormous impact of colonisation on the region and reiterated the call for reparatory justice. He commended the efforts of the University of the West Indies in promoting this agenda.

As the region continues its healing journey from the repercussions of colonisation, President Ali stressed that investing in and utilising homegrown resources are essential for fostering shared development.

“We must value more what we are. We must value more what we produce, and we must value and utilise what we own. Our culture is an integral part of the societies that we are building,” the Guyanese leader opined.

The region is already charting its development trajectory through collaboration in the realms of food and climate security.

President Ali reminded the audience that despite being the smallest carbon emitter, the Caribbean is excessively affected by climate change.

“Our commitment to energy security, climate security, and food security can be celebrated, but we are the worst affected. The commitment of the world is not motivating,” he lamented.

He reiterated Guyana’s dedication to fulfilling its regional and global responsibilities, emphasising that “the prosperity of Guyana, must and will lead to the prosperity of the region”.

He recalled that Guyana raised some GY$ $72.5 million in support of the people of Palestine, and said this reflects the country and the region’s moral standing to be on the right side of history.

“We will continue to do more of this, especially for the people of Haiti. We cannot find ourselves at a forum like this, and ignore the realities of the people of Haiti. We must never allow any circumstance or changing conditions to change the way we approach situations regionally and globally,” the Guyanese leader underscored. (Extracted and Modified from DPI)