Section IV

Jamaica’s Support to the OAS Over the Years…In Brief

While Jamaica continues to enjoy the support of and to collaborate with the OAS and its partner institutions, it should be recognized that the small nation has reciprocated by offering significant support to the OAS and its Member States.

This has come, throughout the years, in the form of promotional coverage of the hundreds of development projects that were instituted by the OAS across the island. This gesture may be considered by some to be small but has always been highly recognized by the OAS.

As a Member State, Jamaica has also actively supported Electoral Observer Missions, the Councils/Committees of the OAS. For example, it served on the Committee on Judicial and Political Affairs that was appointed by the Permanent Council on January 9, 1974; the Inter-American Committee on Education (CIE); Inter-American Committee on Culture, the Inter American Council for Integral Development (CIDI) which it chaired, and many others.

Jamaica’s ratification of Inter-American treaties helps to bolster other international instruments. To date, the country has ratified over 15 treaties aiding to fortify democracy in the Pan-American region. For example, the American Convention on Human Rights of 1969 was ratified by Jamaica on July 8, 1978, and since then, Jamaican nationals have actively sought to secure seats on the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the Inter-American Court of Human rights.

It should not be forgotten that the success of Jamaica, as well as Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago in gaining OAS membership, not only brought about fundamental changes to the original OAS Charter and opened the door to other independent states in the region, but quite significantly enriched the programmes and ultimately, the reach and trajectory of the OAS.

No wonder the island is touted as little, but tallawah (powerful)!