My clip on Prime Minister Basdeo Panday takes me way back to the sixties.
when San Fernando was mostly wooden buildings and Basdeo Panday known fondly as Bass was a lawyer in an old wooden building next to the San Fernando police station. As I recall, in my youthful teenage days my father approached Bass and asked him to ‘fight’ a case against Standard Distributors who sold us a defective expensive refrigerator and refused to correct the issue at hand. He won the case.
This case had made Prime Minister Panday as our family lawyer. On another occasion when I was immigrating to the USA
in 1970 during the State of Emergence [ Black Power Movement]
I was fortunate to have Prime Minister Bass certifying my passport photo and I still hold it dear to me.
My family and I were strong DLP – ‘ Indian’ party supporters and when Mr. Panday became leader of the DLP / ULF / UNC , etc we
voted for him based on RACE which was the order of the day.
My personal relationship with Mr. Panday was because I saw him as the leader of the Indian Race , He,Mr.Panday was more left of center in his politics. That did not suit my political appetite but I stayed loyal to him given the other choices at that time.
When I became an adult I studied Political Science at university and became awakened. Most Indian political leaders were more to the left but I was on the right as a capitalist Trinidadian Indian Nationalist. I tried
to tilt Mr. Panday to the right in many of our meetings in NY and
In Trinidad but with limited success..
Eventually, firebrand Mr. Bass did the unthinkable: he BROKE.
the ‘ African Political Class ceiling ‘ and became the Prime Minister
of Trinidad lifting every Indian head that Trinidad also belongs to them too Prime Minister Panday a fighter for workers’ rights and leader of the nations will be admired and will stay in my HISTORY BOOK as a leader that did more for Trinidad with less time and less resources.
May he be received by the ‘. Vedic Gods’.