WASHINGTON, D.C. — On the occasion of the anniversary of his birth, members of the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS) paid tribute to Simón Bolívar (1783-1830) on Wednesday, July 27, 2016, during a meeting of the Permanent Council held in the Simon Bolívar Hall of the OAS headquarters at 17th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW, on Wednesday, July 27, 2016.
The meeting was presided over by His Excellency Dr. Elliston Rahming, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of The Bahamas to the OAS and Chair of the Permanent Council.
Dr. Rahming, who is also The Bahamas’ Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations, assumed the chairmanship of the OAS Permanent Council on July 1 for a three-month period, ending on September 30.
Born July 24, 1783, Bolívar was a South American general and statesman who brought political independence to six present-day nations.
Speaker after speaker representing the various OAS-member states paid glowing tribute to the man who has been hailed as “the greatest military figure of South America.”
With Ambassador Rahming chairing the meeting, His Excellency Dr. Eugene Newry, Bahamas Ambassador to the United States and Alternate Permanent Representative to the OAS, spoke on behalf of The Bahamas.
“The vagaries of history, or rather its writers at times, make the perspectives of that history somewhat skewed, but my passion for the history of the Greater Caribbean, that is, all those nations bathed by the Caribbean Sea, makes me appreciate the scope of Simon Bolivar being included in the history of the Island Nations of the region, including blood ties,” Dr. Newry said. “Bolivar, a child of both Europe and Africa, had to face his own resistors from the very elite whom he desired to liberate from Spain’s domination.”
Dr. Newry added, “Finding it a challenge, that is, raising an Army and Navy, he turned to recently liberated Haiti for help. There he received military, marine and money supplies. Then in preparation for his invasion, he stopped at Matthew Town, Inagua, in the southern Bahamas, where in the past few years a memorial was inaugurated by Governor General Sir Arthur Foulkes and the Cuban Ambassador to The Bahamas. Bolivar, preceded by his Haitian counterpart Toussaint Louverture, sowed the seeds of Panamericanism and its handmaid, the fraternity of all peoples of the Americas.”