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Barbadian diplomat remembered at home and overseas

WASHINGTON, DC – Accomplished Barbadian diplomat, attorney-at-law and columnist, Ambassador Oliver Jackman, is being remembered in Washington and in Barbados as a champion for his country and for small island developing states the world over.

“While the international recognition of the great Barbadian continues to flow in the wake of his passing this week, I would like to ensure that Oliver Jackman’s contributions to placing the concerns of small island states on the global agenda do not go unmentioned,” said Lelei LeLaulu, president of Counterpart International and an organiser for 1994 Barbados Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States (SIDS).

“While he had little officially to do with the set up and implementation of the SIDS conference, it should be known that his influence, political savvy and immensely intelligent guidance was of huge value to those of us involved in the establishment of the Barbados conference, the outcomes of which continue to be the foundation for global action in support of the sustainable development of small island states,” he noted.

“Ambassador Jackman ended a distinguished diplomatic career with postings at the highest echelons of the United Nations, but as a former UN junior official himself in the Congo he probably took pity on those of us stumbling around Barbados and the region trying to get the conference together with minimal resources; and he was always very kind, generous and gracious,” he added.

Speaking from Barbados, chairman of Counterpart Caribbean Dr. Basil Springer, described Jackman – a family friend – as an inspiration to the peoples of both small island states and developing nations. “He was a no-nonsense man, a brilliant mind who was recognised by the international community for his diplomatic skills,” said Dr. Springer, who is heartened that his son François Jackman has also pursued the profession of career diplomat. The Barbados conference profited enormously too from François Jackman, whose dynamism and vigor ensured that the outcomes of the historic islands summit were broadcast around the world.

In Barbados in 1994, LeLaulu helped coordinate the United Nations aspects of the SIDS conference, while Dr. Springer played a coordinating role in the late Dr. Colin Hudson-inspired “Village of Hope”, an exhibition which anchored the parallel non-governmental forum.

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