ANGUILLA AMONG ISLANDS POSING QUESTIONS TO U. N. SECRETARY GENERAL
Clemvio Hodge did Anguilla proud at the University of the West Indies (UWI)/ United Nations (UN) Youth Symposium held in Barbados on Friday 3 July. He was selected as one of the CARICOM Youth Ambassadors to pose live questions to the UN Secretary General, Mr Ban Ki-Moon, via the video conferencing facility at the local UWI Open Campus in The Valley.
It was a history making moment when the youth of the region were given the opportunity to address their concerns, directly to the UN Secretary-General, on the theme “Caribbean Youth Speak: The World We Want Post – 2015″. There were representatives from the three main UWI campuses in Barbados, Trinidad and Jamaica and the open campuses in Antigua and Anguilla. Locally, a number of youth organizations were represented at the UWI Centre in The Valley. They were the Anguilla Student Council, CARICOM Youth Ambassador, the Department of Youth and Culture and UWI Student Guild. The issues addressed at the conference centered on a number of topics such as youth unemployment, crime and violence, non-communicable diseases and climate change. Seven questions were posed from five countries including Anguilla.
Clemvio Hodge, who is a member of the UWI Open Campus and one of the CARICOM Youth Ambassadors, was given the opportunity to pose the following question: “The effect of climate change in our region is especially pervasive. It’s especially prevalent with the recent invasion of moss from the Sargasso Sea. This ongoing occurrence has had negative influences on the aesthetics of Caribbean islands. Fishermen have had their share of misfortune, and the associated health risks have now stipulated the closure of many beaches e.g. in St Maarten and Barbados. What strategic alliances and solutions are being developed and implemented by the UN to combat these effects?”
The question was well received by Mr Ban Ki-Moon who acknowledged that the region was among those which were the least responsible for climate change but was positioned to receive the brunt of the ill-effects. He committed himself to bringing about the policy framework necessary to effect change – while admonishing the youth of the region to let their voice be heard. In colloquial terms, he was saying:”He, who feels it, knows it”