THURSDAY marked the bicentenary of a major development in St Lucia’s history although not occuring on our shores: the rescue of South American Liberator Simon Bolivar by a St Lucian soldier during a period of armed conflict in the hemisphere.
The Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in Saint Lucia issued a statement on behalf of the government led by President Nicolas MaduroMoros, commemorating the 200th Anniversary of the historical event in which the Saint Lucian hero and Independence martyr Jean Baptiste Bideau, saved Bolivar’s life.
The Embassy said the event occurred on July 14, 1816, on the beaches of Ocumare de la Costa, in Venezuela.
It said: “Thanks to this historic event, the Liberator Simon Bolivar, was able fulfill the dream of liberating five great nations on the South American continent.
Jean Baptiste Bideau embodies the contribution of thousands of Caribbean people who participated and shed their blood in the struggle for the Independence of South America.
“Honour and Glory to the Martyr of Liberty”
Scores of relatives of Bideau still life in St Lucia, especially in Desruisseaux, Micoud.
Next year will mark the 200th anniversary of Jean Baptiste BIdeau’s own death.
A small park named after Bideau with a bust of the former soldier can be found between Government Buildings and the Government Printery in Castries.