A celebration to mark the strengthening of US-Jamaica ties was held Tuesday evening, ahead of the 246th anniversary of America’s Independence under the theme, “60 years of Aid, Service, and Friendship”.
The United States will commemorate its Independence on July 4.
Addressing the event, US Ambassador to Jamaica Nick Perry stressed on the partnership of the two countries.
“Tonight as we celebrate America’s Independence, we also celebrate 60 years of partnership between our two countries. Together we have promoted democracy, human rights and our shared security concerns,” he told the function held at Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston.
At the same time, he noted that Peace Corps Volunteers will resume work in Jamaica, come September.
“Since 1962, more than 4,000 volunteers have served countless communities across the island. Due to the pandemic, volunteers have been absent for the past two years,” he said.
Additionally, he said over the past 12 months, in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, a record number of H2 visas have been issued, bringing critical temporary labour to the US, while providing jobs for thousands of Jamaicans resulting in millions of dollars in remittances.
Minister of Justice Delroy Chuck, in a brief address, said, “We are proud that as we celebrate our Diamond Jubilee we can do so with friends and strong allies like the United States with whom we formed an inextricable bond which has been reinforced by our geographical proximity, sustained by common interest and values and maintained intimate people-to-people contact”.
Officials who shared in the evening’s event included Chief of Defence Staff Rear Admiral Antonette Wemyss Gorman; chief medical officer in the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Jacquiline Bisasor-McKenzie; Opposition spokeswoman on foreign affairs and foreign trade, Lisa Hanna; Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang; and Commissioner of Police Major General Antony Anderson
Perry is the first Jamaican-born person to serve as American ambassador to Jamaica.
He migrated to the US in 1971, served in the US Army for two years of active duty and four years as a reserve.