FROM LEFT: Former SVG Ambassador to Venezuela Andreas Wickham and his wife Yvette (former Minister Counsellor in the SVG Embassy in Venezuela); Eloise Gonsalves, wife of the Prime Minister; Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves; head of the Venezuelan diplomatic mission in SVG, Francisco Perez Santana; Cuban Ambassador Jose Manuel Leyva Ventura; former Ambassador of SVG to Cuba Dexter Rose; and Adreina Bermudez, wife of the head of mission of the Embassy of Venezuela.
News
March 8, 2022
PM Gonsalves recalls ties with Chávez on anniversary of the former Venezuelan leader’s death

THE EMBASSY OF the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), last Friday, commemorated the 9th anniversary of the death of the late President, Hugo Chávez Frías.

A release from the embassy said this was done in the company of Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves, the Cabinet, the Embassy of Cuba in SVG, solidarity movements and the Vincentian people.

PM Gonsalves recalled some anecdotes lived with Commander Hugo Chávez and his dream of having an international airport for the Vincentian people, thanks to Chávez and Commander Fidel Castro.

“In 2001 in a private meeting organised by Fidel; he (Fidel), an interpreter and I alone, he whispered to me: ‘you have to talk to Hugo Chávez, he is a revolutionary, a generous, loving man. I already talked to him about you and he is happy to go to St Vincent and the Grenadines and talk to you’ “ he recounted.

“Fidel wanted me to come to Cuba with the topographic plans of Argyle (International Airport).”

Gonsalves met with Castro and Chávez to explain the airport construction project and Fidel interrupted him during his presentation: “Chávez, this is what you have to build, it is something very difficult, but it must be done”.

Chavez answered, “If Fidel says that the airport must be built, we will have to build the airport”, expressed the Prime Minister.

In his speech, Gonsalves highlighted that his people have been blessed by the solidarity and support of the Bolivarian government. “St Vincent and the Grenadines has benefited intensely from the work and solidarity of Hugo Chávez, as have the rest of the Caribbean, Latin America and the world. It was extraordinary to count on him and learn from him… Chávez is love, Chávez is one; not for the past, not for the present but for the future, he belongs to the future, we have to follow the example of his life and his experiences and apply them according to the circumstances,” Gonsalves expressed.

The head of the Venezuelan diplomatic mission in SVG, Francisco Pérez Santana, paid special tribute to the Eternal Commander, Hugo Chávez: “I would like to convey the urgent need to preserve, make known and defend the living legacy of Hugo Chávez Frías, one of the most important leaders and of greater resonance in the world. In the memory of our peoples, it is necessary today more than ever, in a world of pandemics, political, geopolitical and economic crises, to make visible the emancipating and socialist ideology of Chávez, the heart of the people as defined by the Venezuelan people”.

Likewise, Pérez presented a dossier with the compilation of some texts written by Fidel dedicated to the legacy of Chávez and the video of the act of conferring the Order of Francisco de Miranda to the Ambassador of St Vincent and the Grenadines in Venezuela granted by President Nicolas Maduro Moros in recent days. Pérez highlighted the President’s words in favour of the unity, solidarity and brotherhood existing between both nations and made reference to the importance of the Caribbean country in the region and particularly its leader, Ralph Gonsalves. The president of the Venezuelan-Vincentian Friendship Association (VENVIFA), Mike Browne was also part of the tribute to the Eternal Commander, Hugo Chávez.

“Chávez was defined and distinguished by his unwavering commitment, his determination to build a socialist society that is, a society free of human exploitation. This earned him the deep love of the vast exploited majority especially the poor, and the unrelenting hatred of the small exploiting rich minority, both in Venezuela and abroad. Despite their relentless attacks, he stood firm with the poor,”Browne said.

For Commander Chávez, culture materialised in poetry and music was an important part of history and the rebirth of the peoples of the world. In this sense the Academic Co-ordinator of the Venezuelan Institute for Culture and Co-operation Hugo Chávez Frías, Andreina Bermúdez, dedicated a poem of his inspiration called Soy Contigo (I am with you): “How can I not to love you? My eyes and my breath freeze when I see you palpitating in every man and woman of the homeland. Your Bolivarian hurricane strength revives me, inspires me to continue fighting for this other better world”.

The musical moment in the tribute to Chávez was in the charge of the musical band “Ultimate 5” where musicians Oswald Williams, Gary Peters, Afel Samuel and Jeron Adams delighted those present with original pieces to remember the musician and poet from Sabaneta.

Pérez Santana invited all those present to continue studying the thoughts and works of Commander Chávez and to follow his legacy, “With the purpose of contributing to the strengthening of the socialist ethics, based on the formation of the new man and the new woman, which contributes to the transformation of the culture of the capitalist system rooted in the idiosyncrasy of the people, it is important to promote the study and analysis of the ideas of Commander Chávez, as the theoretical basis of Venezuelan Socialism.”