Friday 24 May, 2019

PM offers condolences on death of former EBC chairman

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley extended condolences to the family and friends of former chairman of the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC), Norbert Masson. 

The Office of the Prime Minister released a statement which included an excerpt from a letter sent by Dr Rowley to Masson's wife Velda Masson, Dr Rowley said he was a 'cherished citizen and accomplished individual', adding that he was grateful to have known him.

"I am grateful, to have shared a relationship with Norbert, which allows me, even though saddened by his death, to celebrate the life and accomplishments of an individual who dedicated some 50 years of service to a developing nation."

"This very witty public servant was highly cherished by all those with whom he worked, having served as a Principal, a Permanent Secretary, a Commissioner and Chairman of the EBC."

Dr Rowley said Masson had a voracious appetite for education and learning.

"What all of us who knew him found amazing was his voracious appetite for education, Norbert having qualified in the fields of mechanical, marine and petroleum engineering. Norbert was never miserly with his knowledge and apart from actually writing books, he was always willing to impart his vast knowledge, both formally and informally."

"Norbert was a champion who, in the view of many who interacted with him, had the finesse to harness the ability of others and assist them in finding their passion; such was his legacy in directing the affairs at one of the most important institutions in our society, the Elections and Boundaries Commission. It is a sphere that many benefit from yet so few understand the implications of but he became a student, teacher and master with his decades of experience at the EBC."

"I have always admired his dedicated service to our country and I am proud that he received national recognition twice with the Medal of Merit (Gold) in 1984 and the Chaconia Medal (Gold) in 2000."

"In my view, Norbert recognised the importance of his position at that definitive period which crafted the meaning of “free and fair elections” for an entire nation."

"During his 29 year tenure, at the EBC, he gained the utmost respect of a grateful nation. We can all feel a sense of pride that Dr. Masson's influence gained regional respect since he was chosen to lead the Association of Caribbean Electoral Organizations."

"Undoubtedly we have lost a citizen of the highest quality, worthy of emulation whose memory we will continue to cherish beyond his earthly journey."

"My sincere hope is that you, your family and friends will find comfort, refuge and be touched by God’s Grace during this difficult time."

"My thoughts and prayers will continue to be with you. Again, accept my deepest sympathy and the sympathy of my family and the citizens of Trinidad and Tobago," Dr Rowley said. 

Masson passed away due to illness on January 8, 2019.

Dr Mas­son worked with the EBC both as a Mem­ber of the Com­mis­sion and as its Chair­man for a to­tal of 29 years.

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