The Minister of Education of Barbados, Ronald Jones, the Deputy Principal of the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, Dr. Clive Landis, and the Cuban Ambassador, Francisco Fernández, opened the II Colloquium on the Legacy of Fidel, counting on the presence of an important Cuban partisan and academic delegation presided over by Dr. José Ramón Balaguer, Member of the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba, and comprised of Idalmis Brooks, Department of International Relations, and professors of Havana University Francisca López, President of the José Martí and Fidel Castro Chairs, and Dr. Jaqueline Laguardia, of the Norman Girvan Chair.
The Minister noted the honor of inaugurating a colloquium dedicated to Fidel Castro, who had made Cuba and the Caribbean visible on the world map and became a spokesman and defender of the independence and sovereignty of small developing countries. Particular importance was given to his contribution to the liberation of Africa, a process during which he demonstrated courage and determination against the world's centers of power, particularly the USA. An example he said will be unforgettable was Cuba's participation in defense and support of the revolutionary process in Granada, where several Cubans fell. Following the line of Cuban cooperation with the Caribbean sister nations, he again highlighted the results of the Cuban Revolution in the various areas of social development, particularly education and health, including the development of scientific research, of which now the countries of the region can benefit.
The Cuban Ambassador thanked both the organizers of the UWI and the Cuban and Caribbean speakers who agreed to honor Fidel with substantive presentations that will address his revolutionary and anti-imperialist thinking, his transforming action of Cuban society, his work dedicated to international cooperation in various guided orders for his internationalist vocation, among other relevant aspects of his life, characterized by a profoundly Martian vision.
He also highlighted the willingness of several faculties of the UWI to organize this colloquium, the second held in Barbados in the first year of the passage to the immortality of the Commander in Chief, as well as to work on the launch soon of the José Martí Honorary Chair - Fidel Castro in this same Campus. In this regard, he remarked his deep satisfaction that he was accompanied on these days by such an important delegation from the Party and the University of Havana, which was an evidence of the importance that Cuba has given to the events that we are celebrating together with Barbados and Cubans, within the framework of 45 years of bilateral relations and of Cuba with CARICOM.
In the opening ceremony of the colloquium, Dr. Francisca López gave the Vice Chancellor Landis a donation of books on Martí and Fidel, coming from the University of Havana and other related institutions, as a modest contribution to the creation project in this Campus the chair of studies on these two universal figures.