President Richards, Head Of State Manning, President Museveni, Secretary-General, Ladies and Gentlemen,
This ruby anniversary year is a vital time for the Commonwealth to recall– and, more notably, look onward. In doing so, I think we could be pleased with how far the Commonwealth has come in its 60years, and yet how true it has actually stayed to its origins. However this does not mean we ought to come to be complacent or hinge on previous successes. Like any kind of great company we have to continuously pay attention to things that give it unique personality.
In my sight one of the core strengths of the Commonwealth hinges on the dedication to usual objectives and also worths. Our shared pledge to “the quest of freedom, tranquility and also progress” that my daddy helped to enshrine in the London Declaration in 1949 means as much today as it did then. We cherish flexibility, freedom as well as development as very much as ever before.
Yet the Commonwealth’s strength lies as much in individuals as it does in values.
Couple of various other international organizations could boast the very same rich diversity of mankind and yet additionally such a commonality of spirit.
The Commonwealth could be proud of that in each of its six years, it has formed the worldwide action to emerging global obstacles.
And on this, the eve of the UN Copenhagen Summit on Climate Change, the Commonwealth has a possibility to lead when more. Several of those affected are amongst the most susceptible, as well as many of the individuals least well able to stand up to the unfavorable effects of Climate Change live in the Commonwealth.
A 2nd area of possibility for the Commonwealth is supporting its young people. Similar to environmental obstacles, this location is not brand-new; yet while the Commonwealth might rightly celebrate reaching its 60th wedding anniversary, the future of this association lies with the one billion that are under 25 years of age. The Commonwealth must reveal that it is relevant to as well as supportive of our young people who have to be encouraged that the Commonwealth could aid them to understand their ambitions.
Mr. President, Mr. Prime Minister, it is a satisfaction for me to be back in Trinidad as well as Tobago, and in the Caribbean. This region is dear to the Commonwealth.
For little island states, the buffeting of the economic tornados of the last twelve months has given a demanding examination; and also wonderful ingenuity has been received order to meet the difficulty. As an organization the Commonwealth must stay specialized to building strength amongst its smaller sized participants.
But it is inadequate to look within the limits of the Commonwealth. In a globe where political, environmental and also economic possibilities as well as troubles go across continents, the Commonwealth will certainly also need to show its relevance past its own boundaries as well as establish a genuinely global perspective.
The motto of Trinidad and Tobago claims: ‘Together we strive, with each other we achieve’. There can be no much better summary of the Commonwealth’s principles as well as no far better guideline for achieving this CHOGM’s stated goal of a more lasting and equitable future.
I hope the leaders right here present– educated by the Commonwealth Youth Forum, individuals’s Forum as well as business Forum held previously today– could map out the route for an additional sixty years of success.
And with these obstacles in mind I am pleased to declare open this twentieth conference of the Commonwealth Heads of Government.