Government to honour Max Richards …”BUT WHAT ABOUT MANNING?”

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Cabinet is to meet to decide how to honour the life and times of the late President, George Maxwell Richards.

This is according to Attorney General, Faris Al Rawi at Richards’ funeral service at NAPA on Wednesday.

But what about the promises to honour the late former Prime Minister, Patrick Manning who died in 2017?

Many promises were made to honour Manning, who served on two occasions as Prime Minister. But up to today, nothing has been done.

Will Manning be honoured by the current Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, who became bitter enemies in 2008?

It was Manning, as Prime Minister in 2008 fired Rowley, describing him as a raging bull and a man totally out of control.

After Manning lost the 2010 general elections, he was forced out of Balisier House days later, leading to Rowley becoming the new political leader of the PNM and Opposition Leader.

So how should Richards be honoured?

Leader of the Opposition, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, suggested Government honour Richards with the country’s highest academic award and establish a national fund in his name.

She said while many spoke in glowing terms about Richards’ life, the bigger questions were “How can we honour him? What is the suggestion for him to be honoured? What tributes should we pay to him? How do we remember him now?”

As an excellent educator, Persad-Bissessar, however, suggested “something at the university…maybe a chair or a national fund in his name. Those two things can be done. That is how I think we can honour him.”

Al Rawi said Cabinet would meet on Thursday.

“So that is a matter that is still in the works and we expect it would no doubt come to the public’s attention soon.”

Asked if any suggestions to honour Richards came up, Al-Rawi said it would be presumptuous to say anything.

“Really this is a combination…less one makes an offer that is inappropriate to the family or maybe not fitting to his own personal desires. I think the purpose today is to respect the legacy and life of the former president…Max as we all call him and then to take those things into proper and measured steps.”

Richards, who served as President for ten years, died on January 8 at the age of 86.

His final send-off began outside the Port-of-Spain City Hall at 8.30 am. The procession headed north along Frederick Street to NAPA.

Richards’ body which was on a gun carriage, was escorted by former Chiefs of Defence Staff – Carl Alfonso, Anthony Franklin, Peter Joseph, Ancil Antoine, Rodney Smart, and Rear Admiral Richard Kelshall. The only other living CDS, Edmund Dillon, did not participate in the procession.

The procession caused a traffic pile up in certain parts of the city.

People lined the pavements on Frederick Street to view the procession.

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