Sir Shridath Ramphal’s papers, covering 72 years of public life, released on the internet

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Former Secretary-General of the Commonwealth (1975-1990), Chairman of the West Indian Commission (1990-1992), Chancellor of the University of the West Indies (1989-2002), Head of the CARICOM Regional Negotiating Machinery, Co-Chair of the Commission on Global Governance (1995).

GEORGETOWN, Guyana – Caribbean and Commonwealth elder statesman, Sir Shridath Ramphal, has released papers on the Internet, covering 72 years of public life in the Caribbean, the Commonwealth and internationally.

In his distinguished career, Sir Shridath ‘Sonny’ Ramphal has served as assistant attorney-general of the West Indies Federation, minister of justice and foreign affairs of Guyana, secretary-general of the Commonwealth, and concurrently Chancellor of the University of Guyana, the University of the West Indies and Warwick University.

He is the only person to have served on all the Global Commissions that produced pioneering reports on the environment, development and disarmament, between 1980 and 1995. He was also chairman of the West Indian Commission, whose 1992 report, “Time for Action”, is still regarded today as the seminal blueprint for Caribbean development.

Sir Shridath was called to service in many other capacities, including president of the World Conservation Union, Special adviser to the UN Conference on environment and development, chief negotiator for the Caribbean on external economic relations and as a mediator and facilitator in elections and constitutional crises.

As the longest-serving Commonwealth secretary-general from 1975 to 1990, Sir Shridath played a lead role in ending institutional racism in Southern Africa, particularly in terminating Apartheid in South Africa. Nelson Mandela said of him: “He is one of those men who have become famous because, in their fight for human justice, they have chosen the whole world as their theatre”.

The website, giving free access to Sir Shridath’s speeches and other submissions from 1950 to 2022, is available to the public of the international community, including universities, libraries, researchers and academics as well as interested readers.

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