Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago: PNM – The People’s National Movement, on September 25, remembered Dr Eric Eustace Williams on his 112th birth anniversary. Williams is the founding father of PNM and is remembered for his rich legacy of service, vision, leadership and patriotism.
Highlighting the role of the veteran politician, PNM took its official Facebook handle and mentioned that Dr Williams has been credited as an instrumental figure in leading the country to political Independence from Britain.
Williams formed the People’s National Movement in 1956, won the national election, and became the chief minister of the country from 1956 to 1959, premier from 1959 to 1962, and prime minister from 1962 to 1981.
During his term as leader, he led Trinidad and Tobago into the Federation of the West Indies, to Independence in 1962, and to republican status in 1976.
According to the update, as the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Williams practised what was called “pragmatic socialism,” stressing the delivery of social services and public goods. He managed to improve education and fostered unrivalled economic development in his 25 years as leader.
Dr Williams was also an author of great acclaim and left behind a volume of Works which are still referenced today by academics and students alike. The Negro in the Caribbean (1942), Capitalism and Slavery (1944), History of the People of Trinidad and Tobago (1962), British Historians and the West Indies (1964), Inward Hunger: The Education of a Prime Minister (1969), and From Columbus to Castro: The History of the Caribbean, 1492–1969 (1970).
People’s National Movement further stated that it was Capitalism and Slavery which was instrumental to the development of the Plantation Economic Model and which helped shift the narrative on the reasons why slavery was ended from one of humanitarian ambitions to an economic argument that the system was financially unsustainable.
Dr Eric Williams remains one of the most significant leaders in the history of modern Trinidad and Tobago. He was born on September 25, 1911 and died on March 29, 1981, at the Prime Minister’s Residence in St Ann’s.
The political party also shared a popular and patriotic quote by Dr Williams, which read, “It takes more than National Boundaries, a National Anthem however stirring, a National Coat of Arms however distinctive, a National Flag however appropriate, a National Flower however beautiful to make a nation.”
In addition to this, PNM also regarded him as Scholar, Historian, Trailblazer, Founding father, Leader, and Everyman. “This is the legacy of Dr Eric Eustace Williams. Born on this day in 1911. Born to greatness,” it wrote.