New UK Ambassador lauds Govt’s climate change, sustainability policies
– President Ali commends UK’s support to protect Guyana’s sovereignty, territorial integrity
The Irfaan Ali-led Government’s robust climate change and sustainability policies were on Tuesday recognised by new British High Commissioner to Guyana, Jane Miller – who has committed future collaborations to ensure a safer environment for newer generations.
Miller shared this position after presenting her letter of credence to President Irfaan Ali, paving the way for her to officially take up her substantive role. She replaces Greg Quinn as the new British High Commissioner to Guyana.
After the departure of Quinn, Ross Denny, who previously served as the UK’s Ambassador to Costa Rica and Nicaragua, was asked to cover in an acting capacity until Miller’s arrival.
In her remarks, the diplomat noted that the partnership between the two countries is strong and will be further strengthened “to the benefits of both countries” during her time in office. Praising Government’s stance on climate change, she pointed out that the issue is also at the forefront of the agenda of UK’s Prime Minister, Boris Johnson.
“Already this year, I’m aware you’ve signed the Leader’s Pledge for Nature and the Global Oceans Alliance. Both of these are key milestones as we work together on sustainable options for cleaner, safer environment for our children,” she noted.
In response, President Ali said that it was important to work together to “seize the opportunity to match political will with action” in the fight against climate change.
He said that he was confident that the 26th UN Climate Change Conference, expected to be hosted in Glasgow in November, will give greater consideration to the concerns of small-island developing states and low-lying coastal states.
“This Conference represents a watershed moment for the discussions on climate change…My Government has advanced its work to revitalise our Low Carbon Development Strategy. Guyana’s future actions in this area will place great emphasis on the protection of our environment, the preservation of our biodiversity and the promotion of renewable energy and measures to ensure climate adaptation,” said the Head of State.
Guyana, he noted, is taking meaningful action to contribute to the global efforts to address “this existential crisis”.
Ali welcomed Miller as the first female Great Britain High Commissioner to Guyana, and stated that the countries have long-standing ties of history and share similar values for the respect of human rights and democracy.
He added that since attaining Independence in 1966, Guyana has shared a strong relationship with Great Britain. He also credited the European nation for being “unwavering in its support for Guyana’s sovereignty and territorial integrity”.
The President, in his remarks, commended the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (UK) for its role last year in defending Guyana’s democracy.
“I must once again restate the sincere appreciation of my Government for the role which the United Kingdom played last year with its principled stand for the preservation of Guyana’s democracy during the impasse in the announcement of the results of our General and Regional Elections. My Administration is committed to sustaining democratic rule in Guyana.”
The President said that Great Britain has been supportive of Guyana’s development efforts through numerous programmes of cooperation, including debt relief, education, water supply, restructuring of the sugar industry, public sector reform and strengthening of the judiciary and law enforcement agencies.
He also applauded its continued support of Guyana’s economic development, including its assistance to strengthen our infrastructure.
The new envoy was pleased with some of the British-financed programmes, including the SMART Hospital Initiative. She also applauded the President for his “determined effort to roll out vaccines across the country” in the fight against COVID-19 and on him applying to join the Media Freedom Coalition.
Speaking on her agenda, she detailed, “The UK is here to support you. I’m aware of the number of British businesses already working in Guyana, including the provision of UK expertise in the oil and gas sector, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, sustainable energy, just to name a few…During my time in Guyana, I look forward to discuss with your Government and civil society, issues of human rights. This will include LGBT rights, abolishing the death penalty and decriminalising suicide. I believe through constructive dialogue; we can learn each other’s perspectives and take meaningful steps.”