The Prime Minister later delivered Jamaica’s Statement to the United Nations (UN) Nelson Mandela Peace Summit, at the UN Headquarters in New York, to mark the centenary of Mr. Mandela’s birth. Mr Holness called on nations of the world to consolidate peaceful coalitions especially at a time when some countries seemed more inclined to use might than protect rights. He said: “The centenary of Nelson Mandela’s birth provides space for us, as world leaders, to affirm the need for healthy and meaningful dialogue to engender peace, reconciliation and communal accord, principles that Mandela would very much wish us to promote on this occasion,” the Prime Minister said. Mr. Holness said these goals are not easily achieved without significant sacrifice from leaders, pointing out that “no one understood this more than Nelson Mandela..
Mr. Holness also used the occasionto underscore Jamaica’s proud and strong leadership role in driving efforts to dismantle the apartheid system in South Africa. “We were the first country in the Western Hemisphere and second in the world, along with India, to ban trade and travel with the racist regime,” he added.