Dominica – PM explains absence at Summit Of Americas
ROSEAU –– Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit has given reasons why he did not attend the Seventh Summit Of The Americas in Panama last week.
Skerrit was heavily criticized for his absence at that meeting and he sought to give an explanation on state-owned DBS Radio’s Talking Point today.
He stated that there were things to be done in Dominica; that he liked to attend practical meetings; and one had to look at the wear and tear on his body.
“I was criticized for not going to the meeting in Panama . . . . When I go to meetings, I am criticized; if I don’t go, I am criticized. What should I do?” he asked.
According to Skerrit, he was out Dominica for some time “and there are some things I need to do in the country and I had to be there physically to do it”.
He added: “I like to go to meetings where men and women can sit down and deal with practical issues and come up with practical solutions to the issues.
“I came back from Asia, then I had to rush back to Jamaica and I figured I just could not make it to Panama. I decided to come back to Dominica. So if I have to go to every meeting that I am invited to, I will be out of the country for the entire year.”
According Skerrit, Dominica was represented well by Minister of Foreign Affairs Francine Baron at the meeting.
“She gave a speech like any other Head of Government,” he stated.
He noted that he tried as much as possible to send ministers to various meetings.
“I try to send ministers to represent me at various conferences and meetings, but this year it has been very difficult with a lot of meetings,” he said.
“So I have to decide which are the priorities, which meetings I can attend, which meetings I cannot attend; and at all of those meetings we we always want to ensure that Dominica is represented someway or the other.”
The Seventh Summit Of The Americas was held under the central theme, Prosperity With Equity: The Challenge Of Cooperation In The Americas.
Sub-themes discussed at the summit include education, health, energy, environment, migration, security, citizen participation and democratic governance.