United Nations International Day of Democracy 2017 was observed this year under the theme, ‘Democracy and Conflict Prevention.’ The International Day of Democracy was observed by fighters for democracy, peace and social progress all over the world.
In 1997, the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) adopted a Universal Declaration on Democracy.
Subsequently, in 2007, the United Nations General Assembly resolved to observe September 15, as International Day of Democracy, with a view to promoting and upholding the principles of democracy. The preamble of the resolution affirmed that: “… while democracies share common features, there is no single model of democracy and that democracy does not belong to any country or region…” The resolution further stated: “…democracy is a universal value based on the freely expressed will of the people to determine their own political, economic, social and cultural systems, and their full participation in all aspects of life…”
Under the leadership of former President Cheddi Jagan, founder of the GPC, the council played a supportive role to the Guyanese people’s struggle for the restoration of democracy in 1992 through free and fair elections. Prior to the 1992 elections the GPC organised several fora on a number of national and international issues to raise the people’s awareness on the importance of democracy, what it involves, the challenges it faces as well as the opportunities it offers.
As President of the Guyana Peace Council and a member of the Presidium of the World Peace Council (WPC) Cheddi Jagan took the cries of the Guyanese people to the international arena making leaders and the peoples of many countries aware of the struggle in his country for the restoration of democracy, racial and working class unity, peace and social progress.
His tireless efforts in this endeavour won the admiration and support of many world leaders including the leadership of the WPC which endorsed his request that June 15 be declared International Day of Solidarity with the People of Guyana.
As it has done in past, and in keeping with this year’s theme, the GPC stands ready to work with all local stakeholders who have declared in favour of working hard to help strengthen our democratic institutions for peace and stability, for effective and inclusive democratic governance, respect for human rights and the rule of law in Guyana. We in the GPC call upon all Guyanese who stand in support of these noble ideals to join with the GPC to collectively and courageously struggle for the realization of this worthy cause.
Further, we appeal for the support of our brothers and sisters around the world with whom we are joined in a common struggle for democracy, peace and social progress.
For Guyana Peace Council