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Wednesday 22 January 2020
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115 public servants do Spanish course

Colombian Ambassador Martha Cecilia Pinilla-Perdomo third from right front row, Reita Toussaint, permanent secretary, Ministry of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs far left, Colombia tutors Alejandro Augusto Zulauga Duque and Natalia Jaramillo front centre, and the participants at the Spanish Course for Public Servants closing ceremony on Friday. - Joan Rampersad
Colombian Ambassador Martha Cecilia Pinilla-Perdomo third from right front row, Reita Toussaint, permanent secretary, Ministry of Foreign and CARICOM Affairs far left, Colombia tutors Alejandro Augusto Zulauga Duque and Natalia Jaramillo front centre, and the participants at the Spanish Course for Public Servants closing ceremony on Friday. - Joan Rampersad

A hundred and 15 public servants were handed certificates at the closing ceremony of a Spanish course for public servants at the National Library, Port of Spain on Friday.

It was the fifth edition of the three-month intensive Spanish courses, through the government of Colombia, in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs (MFCA) and the Ministry of Education.

Tutors Alejandro Augusto Zulauga Duque and Natalia Jaramillo greeted and congratulated all participants in Spanish.

Colombian Ambassador Martha Cecilia Pinilla-Perdomo said the course was implemented to promote ties and friendship that have characterised the relationship between Colombia and TT.

Pinilla-Perdomo lauded the students’ commitment to the course and congratulated them for completing it.

She said: “We are always proud to say that TT has been one of our most successful stories since the beginning of these courses.

“This year we had from Colombia two teachers and provided a programme that focused more on building conversational skills so you would have the opportunity to practice in a unique way, which will help you in your daily tasks.”

She thanked the students for their interest in learning Spanish, saying: “I hope that after starting this journey you will pursue Spanish as a second language.”

Reita Toussaint, permanent secretary, MFCA, thanked the government of Colombia for offering Spanish-language training to TT’s public servants, and going further by providing two tutors.

Among the participants were staff from the Office of the Prime Minister (Gender and Child Affairs Unit), the ministries of Social Development and Family Services, Energy and Energy Industries, Trade and Industry, National Security, Education, Health and the MFCA.

Since the programme started in 2016, some 345 public officials have benefited.

Harrylal Seecharan, chief education officer, MoE, said he was impressed and pleased that such an initiative has been able to thrive and be successful, resulting the graduation of 115 participants from eight ministries.

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