A wonderful man gone too soon
An achiever of significant development in the local health sector.
One of the Democratic Labour Party’s “outstanding” stalwarts.
An important contributor to national political life and culture.
The maker of a wonderful contribution to Barbados.
These were among the words issued in tributes today following the death of former President of Senate and past Cabinet member Sir Branford Taitt this morning.
Minister of Family, Culture, Sports and Youth, Stephen Lashley, said Sir Branford’s work would stand the test of time.
“I had the opportunity when I worked within the Government Information Service of working with Sir Branford and I was able to see up close Branford Taitt being able to achieve significant development (and) progress within the health ministry and being able to display his leadership in a way that got the admiration of those whom he worked with,” he said.
“And of course his record is there and of course he would have been very much involved at the level of the World Health Organisation and PAHO and Barbados has benefitted from that kind of leadership at the international level.
“So I believe that his work both outside of Barbados and here in Barbados would certainly go down in history as being one of the most outstanding ministers of any government in Barbados.”
In a comment on its Facebook page this morning, the DLP said: “The Democratic Labour Party sadly announces the passing of one of our outstanding party stalwarts Sir Branford Tait, who passed away this morning. On behalf of the Prime Minister Freundel Stuart Q.C. Executive and General Council, party members, we extend our condolences to the family of Sir Branford Taitt, may he rest in peace.”
Political Scientist and pollster, Peter W. Wickham, also used that medium to voice his condolences and pay tribute.
The former Young Democratic said Sir Branford “takes to the grave with him a small piece of the heart and soul of the Democratic Labour Party, but more importantly he represented an important contribution to our national political life and culture of this country”.
“Sir Branford was a former Minister of Trade and later Health and I am told one of the most outstanding health ministers we have ever had in this country. He walked with the late (Errol Walton) Barrow and later sat in his cabinet and thereafter served in the cabinet of Sir Lloyd Sandiford.
“(Sir Branford) took a keen interest in the Young Democrats while he was Minister of Health and I well remember him summoning us (I was a Young Dem at the time) to the Pelican Restaurant to lunch in the wake of the (19)91 election (to) thank us for our role in the DLP’s victory in (19)91 and to bid farewell to our VP Kerrie Symmonds who was heading off to Trinidad to complete his studies in Law.
“(Sir Branford) will be remembered for his eloquence, but also for the extent to which he was grounded and took an interest in the man in the street. After elections I will write a full tribute to Sir Brandford, but for the time being I just wanted to enter these reflections and express condolences.”
Former Barbados Labour Party senator Ivan Linton, who attended Wesley Hall school with the late politician, called him “a wonderful person”.
“That characteristic has gone with him throughout his life. He has never passed me, he has never been unkind to me and we always had a good relationship,” he said.
“I knew Branford when we were on the same side, when there was no Democratic Labour Party even as youngsters at school and to my mind he has made a tremendous contribution to the life and development of Barbados and I will always remember this man, really remember him as I know him.” (SC)