Ambassador Tulinabo S. Mushingi
Press Conference and Opening Remarks in Bissau
August 22, 2017; BLO
Good afternoon and thank you for coming. I am honored to be here as the new U.S. ambassador to the Republic of Guinea-Bissau. While this is a brief visit and my remarks will also be short, I wanted to take a moment to get to know you and say a few words.
Even before my appointment by President Trump as the next ambassador to Senegal and the Republic of Guinea-Bissau, I had heard wonderful things about the people of this country and your rich history. I have heard of people from all walks of life who have managed to keep the country moving, despite the many challenges. For example, civil society has stepped up to meet social needs to complement the government’s actions. Educators, entrepreneurs, artists, and community activists — your people are your greatest asset, and ensure that this country will continue to move in the right direction.
People say that Guinea-Bissau is at an impasse due to the political situation. And I must say that the status quo is simply unacceptable. All international organizations including the the UN Security Council have stated, that the implementation of the Conakry Accord, stands as the country’s best way out of the political stalemate.
We, the United States urge the current leaders to promptly take actions that foster consensus and allow for an inclusive government. Political leaders from all sides must put their country’s interest first, and find a solution to this paralysis.
All parties can count on the support of the United States.
We remain firmly committed to and engaged with Guinea-Bissau and its people. And we will continue to support a cadre of programs within the country ranging from journalism training, English language education, public health programming, agricultural services, and security cooperation.
Private investment will be key to the future success of Guinea-Bissau. A number of U.S. companies have noted their interest in increasing their involvement here – whether in phosphate, power, oil and gas, or telecommunications.
But an inclusive government that serves the people is a prerequisite to the financial success of the country; political turmoil hinders potential investment. A successful resolution to the deadlock will bring in stable governance, help attract foreign investment, and promise a bright future to all the people of Guinea-Bissau.
I have great hope for your country and its potential.
Thank you very much.