PM Phillips, OAS SG discuss media integrity, food & regional security

Prime Minister, Brigadier (Retired) Mark Phillips, and Secretary General of the Organisation of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, recently held talks on a wide range of areas – all aimed at improving peace and security in the Region.
Last week, SG Almagro was on his inaugural visit to Guyana since his appointment to the position in 2015.

Prime Minister Mark Phillips and other Government officials with OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro and his team at Friday’s dinner

On Friday, PM Phillips hosted a dinner in honour of the visiting OAS official and his delegation at the Prime Minister’s Residence on Main Street, Georgetown.
In a tweet following the event, SG Almagro said he had fruitful discussions with the PM and expressed his gratitude for the hospitality extended to him and his team.
“[I am] deeply grateful to Prime Minister of #Guyana Mark Phillips for his generous display of hospitality & for welcoming me at his residence. We had a fruitful discussion on importance of media integrity, food security & good governance to strengthen security & peace in the Americas,” the OAS Secretary General stated.
PM Philips was joined by Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Minister, Hugh Todd; Guyana’s Ambassador to the United States of America, Samuel Hinds; Permanent Secretary in the Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Ministry, Ambassador Elisabeth Harper, and other officials.
The OAS, which consists of all 35 independent states of the Americas, constitutes the main political, juridical, and social governmental forum in the hemisphere.
During his visit, SG Almagro met with President Dr Irfaan Ali and several senior Government officials last Thursday at State House in Georgetown.
According to the OAS official, he had “Productive Discussion with President Irfaan Ali [and government] officials on electoral reform, climate change, multidimensional security, One Guyana policy & Inter-American system. [The OAS] remains steadfast in its commitment with Guyana on strengthening democratic institutions.”
Also on Thursday, SG Almagro met with Speaker of the National Assembly in Guyana, Manzoor Nadir, during which the two officials had fruitful discussions on the history of the country’s dynamic political landscape and the importance of representative democracy.
Later in the day, the OAS Secretary General participated in a civil society engagement hosted by the Parliamentary Affairs and Governance Ministry at the Marriott Hotel in Kingston, Georgetown.
“It was a great privilege to present to civil society groups representing varying interests in Georgetown, Guyana. It is essential that we implement equitable and inclusive policies that stimulate access to opportunities for all,” Almagro said in a tweet.
Guyana has received high commendation from the OAS Head for its remarkable efforts in fighting for the rights of its people, according to a report from the Department of Public Information (DPI).
He said Guyana has always been making headway for its people, which often aids in the further unification of the country.
“Guyana has proven itself to be a great defender of democracy. Equally as important, Guyana continues to be a defender of human rights, especially Indigenous Peoples’ rights, and Afro descendants’ rights, recognising to build a nation of unity, all people must be given equitable access to opportunities,” Almagro underscored.
The Secretary General further noted that Guyana has been one of the countries to instil crucial principles to always protect its people.
“Its Government has continued to reaffirm the principles set out on the US charter, which emphasises the protection and fundamental rights of an individual without distinction, to race, nationality, creed or sex,” the he said.
Acknowledging that the Government has been going above and beyond for its people, Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Governance, Gail Teixeira said the achievement was only with the OAS’ support.
Moreover, during his visit, SG Almagro on Thursday evening attended Guyana’s 57th Independence Day Flag Raising Ceremony, which took place, for the first time, in Lethem, Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo).
The flag-raising ceremony to usher in Guyana’s 57th Independence anniversary was transformed into an evening of prayer and reflection in honour of the 19 students who lost their lives in the Mahdia Secondary School Dormitory fire on May 21, 2023. (G8)