STATEMENT MADE IN GRENADA
BY PRIME MINISTER P.J. PATTERSON, ON, PC, QC, MP
ON THE PASSING OF
THE MOST HON. HUGH LAWSON SHEARER
FORMER PRIME MINSITER OF JAMAICA
JULY 5, 2004
I have been deeply saddened by the news of the passing of former Prime Minister of Jamaica, the Most Hon. Hugh Lawson Shearer. Indeed, Jamaica and the entire Caribbean region will be plunged into mourning by his departure.
The news of his passing came as CARICOM Heads gathered at Grand Anse, Grenada for the 25th Regular Meeting of Heads. It also comes at a time when the region was already mourning the passing of Sir George, the first Chief Minister of St. Lucia.
It is a reflection of the high esteem in which Mr. Shearer and Sir Charles are held that Heads of Government paid their respect for the contribution of these two Caribbean stalwarts, by observing a moment of silence in their honour.
Hugh Shearer, who was involved in the regional integration movement in the early years, later represented CARICOM at trade negotiations with Europe and the ACP.
He served Jamaica with honour and distinction as Prime Minister and for a considerable period was the country’s Foreign Minister.
He was widely acknowledged as the doyen of Trade Union Leaders throughout the Caribbean. He championed the rights of workers through the trade union movement, which he led with conviction and total devotion for many years.
Former Prime Minister Shearer’s passing is for me a tremendous personal loss. I will miss his friendship greatly. His death has deprived Jamaica of a quintessential nationalist and dedicated political leader.
Mr. Shearer was beloved by Jamaicans from all walks of life. He will always be remembered as one who could tower above the partisan divide when the demand for unity in action was required.
I extend condolence to his widow, his entire family, the Bustamante Trade Union and his many colleagues in the labour movement and the Jamaica Labour Party.
P. J. PattersonPrime Minister