PM extends condolences on the passing of Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar signs the Condolence book at the Venezuelan Embassy
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar signs the Condolence book at the Venezuelan Embassy

From the Office of the Prime Minister
March 06, 2013

On behalf of the Government and people of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, it is with great sadness that I extend deepest condolences to the Government and people of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and to his family on the passing of Comandante Hugo Chávez Frías, President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Our prayers accompany them in their time of grief.

President Chávez will always be remembered for his vision for the future of his beloved country, for his unwavering commitment to reducing poverty among the dispossessed and for his determination to provide a dignified life to the beneficiaries of his populist programmes.

May his soul rest in peace.

I was honoured to attend the historic inaugural summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), which President Chávez hosted in Caracas in December, 2011. I well recall his receptivity to Trinidad and Tobago’s proposal that the CELAC troika be expanded to a quartet to include a Caribbean voice.

This year, 2013, we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela. Venezuela is one of our strongest allies and our relationship remains solid.

Again, on behalf of the Government and people of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, I extend our deepest sympathy to the Government and people of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela on the death of President Hugo Chávez Frías.

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar offers Condolences to the Venezuelan Ambassador
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar offers Condolences to the Venezuelan Ambassador Coromoto Godoy Calderon

Honourable Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s letter of condolence to His Excellency Nicholas Manduro

Executive Vice President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
Palacio de Miraflores,

Your Excellency,

I write to express the profound sympathy of the Government and People of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago to the Government and People of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and to the family of Comandante Hugo Rafael Chavez Frias, President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Death has cut short the life of this committed integrationist who was completely dedicated to the equitable development of his own people and of the people of Latin American and the Caribbean.

President Chavez leaves a legacy of strong leadership and unshakable commitment to his principles. Like the Liberator Simon Bolivar, from whom he drew inspiration, President Chavez lived by the maxim that “when the state is weak, and when results are distantly seen, all men hesitate; opinion is divided, passions rage, and the enemy fans these passions in order to win an easy victory because of them”. The United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) can be proud of a leader who exemplified so much for so many.

I was honored to have collaborated with President Chavez not only to consolidate the solid bonds of kinship and shared interests which unite Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela, but also in furtherance of the goals of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC). In this year of the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between both our countries, I wish to assure you of my continued disposition and that of my Government to strengthen even more the ties which bind Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration and esteem.

Kamla Persad-Bissessar
Prime Minister

7 thoughts on “PM extends condolences on the passing of Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez”

  1. PM attending funeral today
    PRIME Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar will attend the funeral of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in Caracas today. This means she will miss the debate on the Defence Amendment Bill 2013 which begins in the House of Representatives at 1.30 pm. Attorney General Anand Ramlogan will open the debate.

  2. There is nothing more welcome to her MAjestic Queen K, than some political distraction , that she can bite into , and so distract , her historically comatose subjects , when it comes to de pertinent issues of de day , especially as it affect’s them. Need I mention failing health care , where women are getting fertilization treatment without knowing, or a substandard security system, where high end government officials ,are dancing in dark quarters , with ex Police, of questionable character , in effort to revamp an ‘anti Afro – Trini -genocidal united , called de Flying Squad,’ non existent job growth,and de list goes on? I wonder if,as a goodwill gesture to our desperate Venezuelian brothers and sisters stuck in Trinidad , doing heaven’s knows what, would Her Majestick , and her fat cat Foreign Minister Dookie, tweak our immigration policy a bit,and extend a helping hand?
    Don’t get me wrong , as I love me some CARICOM people , but would prefer to see the ACP Group embraced a bit,along with an OAS ,with some teeth.
    T&T has a role to play , as it has become one of the most desired , and attractive states ,to many desperate regional people’s- especially Venezuela, and counting. Just saying! Where are the visionary , less reactionary leaders, is all Iwish to know?

  3. Short, sympathetic, reflective and effective speech Madam PM. It appears you are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. You are not distracting but you are like any other diplomat doing your job. From the criticisms I read about you and the government are like watchdogs hell bent to bring you down without giving you a fair chance to govern. Were there mistakes made, I believe so, but the good news is that there are evidence of learning. However, the reports I have been hearing from some ministries via professional experts are good and it appears there are good news on the horizon. You need to be encouraged to govern and not to be ‘cowed’ into entertaining.

    1. I agree with you Loyal Trini in the sense that Prime Minister Persad-Bissessar did the right thing by acknowledging the death of President Chavez and by sending an official letter of sympathy to the Executive Vice President of Venezuela.

      In fact, I would have been highly dismayed if she hadn’t. Despite our poltical differences over the issue of fishing in Venezuelan maritime jurisdictions, Venezuela is our neighbour and it would have been a huge diplomatic misstep for her not to express her official sympathy. Not attending the funeral would have been an even bigger mistake.

      So you will not hear any criticism of her actions from me.

  4. Loyal Trini said,”You are not distracting but you are like any other diplomat doing your job?”
    I’ll say for de record, Loyal Trini, along with your equally clueless sidekick TriniAmerindian, don’t behave like a simplistic , politically naive ,fanatic now guys! The world ain’t gong to change dat dramatically if Auntie K , attend a funeral , or send her Foreign MInister, and no one said she was wrong to to pay condolences to Uncle Chavez, so get your facts right.
    Truth be told, whether it’s Beetham Sea Lots (scene of a recent RTA disaster) Caracas,(home of late military strongman, turn politician) or George Village Tableland ,home of recentlybmurderd police Sergeant) turning up in your neighbor house, to show condolences because de Pappi, or head honcho of de house is deed, but showing no concern for his kids/ family , over the next 364 days of de year, ain’t diplomacy ,or even prudent politicking for dat matter , but …., well, even you both ,can fill in de blanks , as to where I am gong with that.
    No one that dare call themselves patriotic Citizens ,hates your Prime Minister,or criticizes her , or de UNC dominated ,PP party, and her government , because they are somehow ,hell bent on bringing her down, without a fair chance to govern.’What utter rubbish! Just in case you jokers did not know , this is what we call a healthy democracy,which include’s holding folks accountable, calling them out when we see them trying to give de gullible , a 6 for a 9, ensuring they don’t run roughshod over common folks fndamental Human Rights , with backdoor opaque laws , and destructive policies, demanding that they adhere to the promises as laid out by their manefesto, and granted to them , by all our respective voters , who fell prey .
    This basic freedom , and right of speech , is something one should point out , that Basdeo , and his successor ,in ‘Her Majestick Queen K,’inherited from dem alleged savages ,from Afrika land, that controlled de political landscape ,once your white massa departed.
    It is what,’Me think,’ Loyal Trini and sidekick ,is practiced in your new found homes of Canada, and USA,and de real reason why , ‘you allz,’did not run to live in Nairobi, Bangladsh, BUrma, or Venezuela , when escaping dem alleged Trini genocidal maniacs ,of ‘kinky head nation,’some 27 years ago, eeeh?
    Mistakes made? Perish de thought, as that is something -according to your ‘professional experts ,’rabid activists , and media gurus -that was only limited to de Eric Williams, George Chambers ,ANR Robinson, and Patrick Manning’s of de world , ennnt?
    Yet these immoral cretins ,are still mystified ,as to why our under achieving country,is continually taking one step forward , and five backward.
    It is very sad ,but true , that everything for folks like insecure Loyal Trini, and others of similar mindset, are only viewed through narrow ,tribalist lens.
    To this I say …..Oh AfroBuddahSunGod, if you dare , please save us from self serving , devisive, country haters, wheresoever they lurks!
    I luv dis land , but it can be a challenge at times.

    1. Uhmmm Neal, I am not sure why you are lumping me with Loyal Trini. I do not support all of Prime Minister Persad-Bissessar’s policies. I am just saying that I am not sure why you were bringing T&T’s politics into this, and frankly, I was confused by your post and had a hard time understanding the point you were trying to make.

      However, from what I can understand of your post, you could not see the value of attending her funeral. If that is the case, I am sorry, this is where we will have to part company. How would it look if leaders from other states can fly halfway across the world and yet and Venezuela’s neighbour fails to do so? Maybe it’s my simplistic mind, but that would be an opportunity lost to to keep our relationship with Venezuela intact. That’s the only point I am trying to make. Because I do type long paragraphs and indulge in overly convoluted thinking does not mean I am disqualified from commenting on this thread. If you think it is, then that is your issue and not mine and you can continue to dispense your ad hominems if you must.

      Contrary to what you believe, I do see the forest for the trees and I say everything I say for a reason. Since you cannot seem to understand my political philosophy, let me break it down for you:

      1) Chavez, as flawed as he was, cared about the people and their progress, and I can respect that, and I believe it would be in T&T’s best interests to strengthen its economic and cultural partnership with Venezuela and other Latin American countries.

      2) Yes, the ACP and the OAS (of which Venezuela is a member) does offer the prospect of a strong partnership, so I do not have any issue with your original point.

      3) The United States is a falling empire and on the wrong side of history. You deride me for being in the US, but I am in the US to understand the nature of the beast, so I can vanquish it, ya’ dig? So please do not be so quick to tar me with the unpatriotic brush. There is a method to my madness. Thus, the time has come for Trinidad and Tobago to wean itself off of the United States as its chief economic benefactor. Trust me, this partnership is fast outliving its usefulness.

      I said all that to say this: the little things matter. Going to a funeral may seem mundane and not matter to you, but that is a great opportunity to keep our ties with Venezuela intact and wean ourselves off the United States’ economic system. We have to explore further economic partnerships, and the first step is to establish diplomatic goodwill.

      Please refrain from placing me in this tiresome “us versus them” paradigm. I am no longer “simplistic” in that sense.

  5. Afrobuddahsungod is with me in St.Maarten presently. Your comments are absolutely hogwash.

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