By CECILY ASSON Wednesday, March 6 2013
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar last night extended her condolences to the loved ones of President Hugo Chavez and also to the people of Venezuela on his passing yesterday. Chavez died at a military hospital in Caracas at 4.25 pm after a long battle with cancer. He was 58.
Persad-Bissessar spoke to journalists shortly after delivering the feature address at the first public consultation on a “Policy on Local Government Transformation and Modernisation” at the auditorium of the San Fernando City Corporation.
She said: “For the moment I want to say our condolences go out to the family of Hugo Chavez and the people of Venezuela. He has always been a flamboyant and hard working man in his own way. He broke a lot of ground and he worked for his country to the best of his ability.”
She said many will mourn his passing. Persad-Bissessar said she remembered his warmth when she met him in 2011 at a Community of Latin America and Caribbean States (CELAC) meeting in Caracas.
“He was very warm to us and I do feel his loss and I am sure the people of Venezuela mourn him.”
She said there are those who felt that “he took from the rich to give to the poor” but there are also many in Venezuela who have a “tremendous love for him. The fact that he won the election again shows that his popularity was tremendous.”
She said she remembered giving him a bottle of holy water from Mount St Benedict, wishing him “good health and even inviting him to come to Trinidad to “bathe” with the water.
She said TT will be well represented at his funeral.
Persad-Bissessar said a formal statement will be issued on his passing.