I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of General Colin Powell; a true trailblazer, statesman, diplomat, distinguished servant and gentleman, former US Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
Born to Jamaican parents in New York, General Powell never forgot his roots and family lineage in Jamaica.
His service in the US military was one of distinction and led to him being named Chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
He served the United States of America at the highest levels in the security apparatus and was a pioneer in leading the way as a man of colour and the son of immigrants. General Powell rose through the ranks and was national security advisor to former President Ronald Regan, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs in the President George H Bush administration and Secretary of State to President George W Bush.
His exemplary and distinguished career has served as an inspiration to millions in the US, Jamaica, and the rest of the world.
In 2018, I had the distinguished pleasure of meeting General Powell, and it was like talking with a longtime friend; his passion for Jamaica was evident and we had very interesting discussions about developments taking place here.
On behalf of the Government and people of Jamaica, I extend heartfelt condolences to the family of former US Secretary of State, General Colin Powell and to the people of the United States.
May his soul Rest In Peace.