I first met Mrs Jagan in the 1980s during the often harsh struggles for the restoration of democracy in Guyana. I was a correspondent at the time for the Guyanese newspaper the Mirror where she was then editor. But she was long known for her dedication and tirelessness on behalf of the working people and patriotic businesspeople and farmers of Guyana and the world, of all races and religions, including those in Barbados.
Mrs Jagan as a parliamentarian − she was at one time Minister of Home Affairs − worked diligently and faithfully on behalf of the people, first under the yoke of colonialism and then when Guyana became independent in 1966.
Aside from the general work, she advanced the causes of Guyanese women, and we must give credit to the seminal advances and achievements made under her and her government’s watch. I remember having brief discussions only last September with her on my visit to Guyana on issues such as solidarity with the Palestinian people, about which she wrote in recent months in her column in the Guyana press.
She steadfastly defended the rights of peoples worldwide to material and other benefits and freedoms under a democratic dispensation free from discrimination. Whenever I met her in Guyana, she frequently asked me about the Barbadian people and their government, along with questions about Guyanese nationals in the island.
United States-born Mrs Jagan was largely admired by the Guyanese people of all races for her dedication, tireless and selfless work on behalf of the Guyanese people, those in the Caribbean and other countries.
Long live the memory of Comrade Janet Jagan and her selfless dedication to friendship and solidarity with the world’s peoples!