ST. JOHN’S, Antigua and Barbuda – 23rd July, 2021…..Prime Minister the Hon. Gaston Browne, on Friday delivered a video statement at the funeral service of Haitian President Jovenel Moise who was assassinated two weeks ago in his home.
We reproduce in full the text of the Prime Minister’s Statement below. Access to the video of the statement can be reached through the following link: https://fb.watch/6WPWBLm3d0/
Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda and Chairman of CARICOM,
The Hon. Gaston Browne
Statement at the funeral of Haiti President Jovenel Moïse.
Friday 23rd July 2021.
Prime Minister Ariel Henry
Madame Martine Moise and the Moise Family
Ladies and Gentlemen
On behalf of the member states of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), I offer deep condolences at the loss of Jovenel Moise.
The circumstances of his death shocked the entire Caribbean.
For us, assassination is an abomination that assaults our sense of humanity and undermines our democracy.
There are no circumstances that would justify such planned and malicious murder.
We deplore and condemn it strongly and unreservedly.
Even as we must bury Jovenel Moise, we must not bury the circumstances of his death.
All those, who are responsible, must be brought to justice.
For the word must go out from this place, to every nook and cranny in Haiti, to every distant place across our Caribbean neighbourhood, that we will not tolerate such viciousness in any aspect of our lives.
As no problem can be solved by wanton violence; no problem confronting Haiti has been solved by the assassination of Jovenel Moise.
But, the political and civil society groups, and the people of Haiti in general, should not let his tragic death be in vain.
Haiti must not become trapped in a vicious cycle of retribution and recriminations.
Instead, the circumstances of Jovenel’s death, must shock everyone in Haiti to seek pathways for peace, stability, and prosperity, whether they were his political friend or political foe.
Differences exist between you, but no difference exists in your aspirations and ambitions for the advancement of Haiti and the Haitian people.
You want a democratic country, where freedom reigns for the individual and your democratic institutions and values are respected by all.
You want a Haiti where children can attend school, get a solid education and build a good future;
and you want a nation which creates jobs; provides lands to the landless; delivers health care; empowers workers, and improves the quality of life for all.
Within that framework of shared aspirations and ambitions, is the common ground on which you can debate without violence and on which you can fashion a system of governance that allows government and opposition to function peacefully in the interest of the nation you all love.
In all this, the countries of the Caribbean stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters Haiti.
Our hand is offered in friendship, support and an enduring admiration for the strength and resilience of the Haitian people, who led a successfully revolution in 1791, freeing themselves from the oppression of slavery.
Just as you freed yourselves from the bondage of slavery; you shall be triumphant in freeing yourselves from the socio-economic economic and political challenges that beset you.
And, as Haiti lays its President to rest, it is our fervent hope that Haiti will rise, determined to fulfil all its promise, and achieve all its potential.
We pray for the soul of Jovenel Moise, and for the wellbeing of his wife and children.
May he rest in peace.
MAURICE F. MERCHANT
Director-General of Communications | Government of Antigua and Barbuda