I have taken note of the glowing tribute by one of his colleagues at the Mausica Teachers' Training College to my dear cousin and friend, the late Bertie Fraser with the writer regretting his apparent slight by both the PNM and Pan Trinbago.
Bertie died — a victim of brain cancer — disillusioned and even bitter at being treated as taboo by his former political colleagues.
Bertie was drafted into politics as MP for Tunapuna at a time when the PNM would have been hard-pressed to retain this marginal seat.
His meagre salary as parliamentary secretary for culture did not allow him to live comfortably. And, unlike today's MPs and ministers, he was provided neither with a constituency office nor even adequate transport.
He soon fell afoul of his party's hierarchy. It was no surprise that he chose to resign his positions and headed to the US where he was hoping to further his education.
The crowning of Bertie's disillusionment was to come when, having become qualified in his chosen field, he visited Trinidad on three occasions in an effort to resettle.
He wanted to establish a consultancy firm and sought out his former colleagues in politics. Regrettably, to a man, they refused to grant him even an audience. Needless to say Bertie vowed that he would never return to settle permanently in this country — the country of his birth.
Bertie's experience is a lesson for all politicians that "once you are in you are in, but when you are out, you are not only out but down and out".
Errol OC Cupid