Presentation of Credentials by His Excellency Hedi Picquart, Ambassador-designate of France to The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

The Presentation of Credentials by His Excellency Hedi Picquart, Ambassador-designate of France to The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago was held on February 26, 2015 at the Office of His Excellency the President.

His Excellency Anthony Thomas Aquinas Carmona, ORTT, S.C. the President of The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago and Mrs Reema Carmona, hosted His Excellency Hedi Picquart, Ambassador-designate of France to The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.  At the start of this meeting the Ambassador presented his letters of Credence to the President.  Accompanying the Ambassador were his wife wife Mrs. Brigitte Picquart, son Yohan, daughter Marion and son-in-law Dr Xavier Liem.

His Excellency after explaining that the presence of the sixteen (16) students and eight (8) teachers who were invited to witness the ceremony was to demonstrate what is possible in life once you set goals and work hard, invited Ambassador Hedi Picquart, who speaks six (6) languages to address the students on his experiences, his path to becoming an Ambassador and the challenges he faced during his tenure of diplomatic service.

Ambassador Picquart thanked Trinidad and Tobago for its stance on terrorism as his last posting was Tripoli, Libya (2011-14) where witnessed the bombing of the French Embassy in Tripoli and the murder of his international colleague and diplomat, United States Ambassador to Libya, John Christopher Stevens.

President Carmona commended Ambassador Picquart on the excellent job he had done, in bringing together parties to resolve many a conflict by stating that diplomats are the unsung peacemakers of the world and were it not for their presence and dedication to duty, there may have well been many more wars and conflicts,.

Ambassador Picquart in turn thanked His Excellency for himself and on behalf of French President Francois Hollande, for call to relay his sympathy on behalf of Trinidad and Tobago for the loss of lives caused by the terrorist attack on the French satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo.  Ambassador Picquart noted that President Carmona’s call was special to him although as Ambassador-designate, he had not yet presented his credentials.

Ambassador Picquart further spoke of his many challenges as a diplomat in the world of terrorism and attempts by himself and other diplomats to bring peace to Libya.  President Carmona stated that Trinidad and Tobago too is committed to the fight against terrorism which can be seen in our seeking the right to establish the UN Secretariat for the Small Arms Treaty in Port of Spain as we too have lost citizens of great potential to the surge of terrorism.  Of particular note are a 29 year old student from Point Fortin killed in the terrorist bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland; Ravi Ramrattan in the Westgage Shopping Mall terrorist massacre in Kenya and some twelve (12) citizens in the 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Centers, Manhattan, USA.

Ambassador Picquart, on occasion conversed with the local students in his native French and at times two (2) students, Jonathon Auguste of St Mary’s College and Tameka Gosine of St Joseph’s Convent, San Fernando, alternated as interpreters.

The Ambassador Picquart complimented President Carmona for his progressive student initiative and for also including differently-abled students in the ceremony from Audrey Jeffers School for the Deaf – Shaniece Brown and Amrika Ramroop accompanied by sign interpreter Ms. Veronica John.

The teachers, students and schools in attendance were:



Father Gregory Augustine

Fatima College – Teacher

Gregorio Felician


Kyle Benjamin


Ms. James

Holy Name Convent, POS – Teacher

Larissa Fortune


Maylene Saunders


Mr David Assing

St. Joseph’s Convent, POS – Teacher

Chinyere Herbert


Sarah Seukeran


Mrs. Nadine Joseph- Dennie

St. Joseph’s Convent, San Fernando – Teacher

Alicia Jogie


Tameka Gosine


Mr. Arnold Mc Letchie

St. Mary’s College – Teacher

Che Richards


Johnathon Auguste


Ms. Lesa Moses

Iere High School – Teacher

Nishaala Khemraj


Nityanand Jaggai


Ms Aneefa Ali

The British Academy – Teacher

Eva Kennedy Doig


Mercedes Prevatt


Ms. Veronica John

Audrey Jeffers School For The Deaf – Interpreter

Shaniece Brown


Amrika Ramroop