Parties join forces to pay tribute to Dr Eric Williams
OPPOSITION Senator Pennelope Beckles has said that not enough was being done so that the nation's youths could have a greater appreciation of the contribution of the late Dr Eric Williams, the father of the nation.
Speaking to members of the media Sunday during a walk to commemorate Williams, organised by the Dr Eric Williams Memorial Committee, Beckles, said no, when asked whether she thought that Williams' contribution to the country had been ventilated enough so that the youths could have an appreciation for him.
"I don't think that there is sufficient effort made but I think it is a good start," Beckles said as she praised the committee's chairman Reginald Vidale for his efforts.
Asked about the low turnout by members of the People's National Movement (PNM), which was founded by Williams, Beckles said, "I certainly hope that there will be a lot more. Mr Vidale has been very consistent and committed. We all made the point that this is crossing political barriers. As the PNM of course, we know he is not just the father of the nation but the founder of the party so we make the extra effort...there is a multiplicity of events and everyone is dividing their time.
"I know for a fact that a lot of persons had invitations to go to a lot of Eid functions. I myself had two others and I told them I will be late. The two of us are here representing the PNM and I know some of them are still down in Diego Martin assisting the flood victims," she said.
Minister of Planning Bhoendradatt Tewarie also attended the march and walked alongside MP for Laventille West, Nileung Hypolite, and Beckles.
Speaking to the media, Tewarie said people were mistaken to think that the Government was not going to give Williams his just due because he was founder of the PNM.
He added that the celebrations for the 50th anniversary of Independence began at City Hall, Knox Street, Port of Spain where Dr Williams chaired the country's constitutional committee.
"Eric Williams is more than a partisan political figure, he is a national figure and we must treat him as such," Tewarie said.
The Minister would not say how much money the State spent on the march but said that the tab was picked up by the Government. He added that the Government partnered with the committee to highlight Williams's significance of in the country's history.
Asked what was one everlasting thing that Williams did or stood for that should be forever etched in the minds of the country, Hypolite said his concentration on education for young people of the country.
The march which began on Tragarete Road opposite TTPost, did so to the sound of the Starlift Steel Orchestra and Brimblers. It was led by tassa drummers and ended at Woodford Square with a cultural show.