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Rest in Peace
Thank you for all the work that you have done for our country. I'm so proud of you and I think you are certainly one of our best prime ministers ever! Thank you for your national and regional outlook. We thank God for your life and I know your family is proud of you. God bless you richly!
Professor, The Right Honourable Owen Seymour Arthur was the longest serving Prime Minister of Barbados from 1994 – 2008. His state funeral and interment will take place today, Friday August 14, 2020 in St. Peter.
Born and bred in the parish of St. Peter, he attended the All Saints Boys School and then Coleridge and Parry Boys’ School. He attended sixth form at the prestigious Harrison College and studied further at The University of the West Indies where he majored in Economics. He worked in Jamaica before his illustrious career in politics in Barbados.
During his political career, he was the Member of Parliament for St. Peter and instituted many changes to uplift the people and the surroundings of 'his beloved’ parish. Although he had an innate love for the parish, his political prowess benefitted the length and breadth of Barbados, the Caribbean and beyond. He was well respected as an economist and a well learned individual. He was patriotic to his island nation and his devotion extended to the Caribbean.
He fought for regional integration and firmly endorsed cooperation among Caribbean nations. The former Prime Minister according to the Vincentian Prime Minster Dr. Ralph Gonzalves was “the chief architect, advocacy, and intellectual guide of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME)” This move did not only speak to uniting nations economically but in every aspect and so he was influential in the Caribbean hosting the Cricket World Cup in 2007. His vision for integration and subsequent role in establishing the CSME set in motion a legacy that will strengthen the Caribbean nations for years to come.
The former Prime Minister through economic policies, drastically reduced the unemployment rate from 20% to just over 9% from 1994 to 2000; and boosted agricultural and tourism industries during his tenure. He also introduced the National HIV/AIDS policy.
I became familiar with him indirectly through interaction with some of his family members. The sincere concern displayed, revealed that he was a family-centered person.
Professor, The Right Honourable Owen Seymour Arthur, a stalwart among men, a visionary lived up to his purpose and surpassed expectations. Our country, Barbados, the Caribbean and his family will deeply mourn his passing.
The staff of WSC Medical Inc. extends heartfelt condolences to his family.
“Requiescat in pace” (May he rest in peace)
A Caribbeanist par excellence you will long be remembered for your fierce defence of the Caribbean. Farewell
Dr. Gail-Selina Hewitt-Clarke
Although I missed the political tenure (living overseas) of Mr. Arthur, I so appreciate his contribution to the country and the people of Barbados, both there and abroad. My husband and I, Dr. Michael Clarke, wish the citizens of Barbados, and his family and friends, our deepest sympathies.
Estherlita Griffiths (nee Carter)
I offer sincere condolences to the family and loved ones of the late Prime Minister, Professor The Right Honourable Owen Arthur. I celebrate his achievements and especially those that improved the lives and livelihoods of the people of Barbados and the Caribbean.
May God continue peace and comfort to you all.
Remembering an Architect of Integration
Late Prime Minister of Barbados, Professor the Right Honourable Owen Arthur, was an infectious no-nonsense person who had a reputation for reading everything placed before him, and an unmatched ability to ensure that whatever advice he received was factual and accurate. These qualities allowed him, like integrationists before him, to reflect incisively on the gaps in the integration project in the context of a changing world economy, and to lead in conceiving a refreshed vision for CARICOM. The conception of the CDF commenced with the creation of the CARICOM quasi-cabinet in 1999 when Barbados, under the leadership of then Prime Minister Arthur, took the portfolio as Lead Head of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME). This placed the Prime Minister in the driving seat to ensure the Treaty of Chaguaramas was updated to include a mechanism to address more than just the correction of trade imbalances but also the response to the wider threats of globalization for CARICOM. That response would include the provision of technical and financial support to countries regions and sectors that would suffer clear disadvantages from the introduction of measures to implement the CSME – the mandate of the CARICOM Development Fund (CDF).
This great statesman challenged the larger members of the Community, the More Developed Countries (MDCs) and the then Chairman of the OECS to make a public declaration of commitment to the CSME, as well as to the establishment of the CDF as a key mechanism to bind the requisite commitment to the CSME project. He addressed the cabinets in many countries in the region, as well as their parliamentary oppositions independently, and held town hall meetings to explain to ordinary people what the CSME meant and how elements of the institutional apparatus, like the CDF, would assist them to adjust to the changes required by integration. PM Arthur with his wit, guile and common touch in several of these countries allayed many fears surrounding deeper integration, while simultaneously helping their political leadership to honour their commitment to take responsibility for introduction of the CSME. Everyone enjoyed interacting with this Prime Minister from another island talking to them in familiar terms about their own problems. His success in this endeavour culminated in Jamaica with the public launch of the commitment to the CSME by all Member states in 2006 and the work began in earnest in creating the institutional structures of the CSME; a key element of which was the CDF.
PM Arthur was a true champion of integration and a lifelong friend to the CDF, who not only generously gave of his advice, but got down in the trenches, bringing his vision, vast knowledge and special insight to the task of converting the dream to an idea, and the idea to an institution that positively touches people’s lives. The Board, management and staff of the CDF will miss this dear friend, advocate and champion. May his soul have eternal rest and rise in glory. May his immediate family, relatives and close friends take comfort in the knowledge that their sacrifices over the years, in moulding and sharing with us this life of unstinting service in the person of Professor the Right Honourable Owen Arthur, have led to the enhancement of the lives of people across the Caribbean Community, and left a legacy in the establishment of institutions like the CARICOM Development Fund, and by extension helped build the framework for the successful deeper integration of the Caribbean region and its people.
Rodinald R. Soomer
Chief Executive Officer
CARICOM Development Fund
My condolences to the Arthur Family . May Owen R.I.P . May God comfort you at this time. And may his memories live on forever in your hearts.🙏🏾🙏🏾🙏🏾🙏🏾
His journey here may be over. May he rest peacefully and rise in glory 🙏🏿
My deepest sympathy and prayers to His wife Julie, daughters Sabrina (husband) and Leah, grand daughter Isbella. He truly was a good person, good boss to me. Also a very fabulous chef because I often had the pleasure of eating his dishes. To you Julie, for your kindness and love to me. May his soul rest in peace. My prayers are with you and the immediate family.
Joy Anne Christie
On behalf of the Republic Bank Premium Banking family, I wish to extend heartfelt sympathy to the wife, children and extended family of The Right Honourable Owen Seymour Arthur. Mr. Arthur was a great man with whom we shared many intellectual, stimulating and often funny conversations. You never left his audience without a word of wisdom or new found knowledge. A man with a passion for justice and fairness, who gave his all to his country. We will surely miss you. May you rest in peace to rise in glory.
Condolences to the family
A humane, humble man with a big heart. I will forever remember our meeting at a time of family bereavement when he intervened to ease the pangs of tragedy. I also remmber his buljol brought to the Ellerton Wesleyan church during a Wesleyan Woman Tastes of the Caribbean session. He brought it and he stayed. I wish Julie and family my deepest sympathy. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.
I met Former Prime Minister, Professor, The Rt. Honourable Owen Arthur when I was but 17 years old, he came into the video shop where I worked. At the time he was the Prime Minister, her humble, and very much down to earth. I ended up working for the RBPF where I encountered him more often and at one point received a letter thanking me for work done. Rest in peace Former Prime Minister, Professor, The Rt. Honourable Owen Arthur
May God strengthen you Mrs. Arthur and your family and friends and extent the Barbadian community throughout this time of mourning for our own Professor The Right Honourable Owen. S. Arthur may he rest in peace and rise in glory.
A legendary Prime Minister who transformed our island nation. Your service will forever inspire Barbadians to go for the hold.
Rest in Peace
On behalf of The Richards Family from Kingston, St. Mary and Ocho Rios, Jamaica, we would like to Express our condolences to the family, the government and people of Barbados on the death of Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur. Uncle Owen, or Owen as some of us called him was a close family friend of ours who we met when he was living in Jamaica from the 1970's. We treasure the memories of the fun filled laughter and good times we had with him from the 1970's right up to the times when he was Prime Minister and beyond. Our visits to Barbados to see him at Illaro Court will forever be etched in our minds. We are sad and will truly miss him. Rest in Paradise Uncle Owen and may light perpetual shine upon you eternally. Horace Richards, Kareen Richards, Tracey Ann Richards, Nicole Richards.
Thank you for your years of service. May you rest in peace!
We are thankful for your contribution, insight, direction and love for our country. You were loved and will be greatly missed.
Mary Symmonds , President, HCQCAA, USA
The Rt Honorable Owen Seymour Arthur was a humble and gifted son of Barbados and the Caribbean.. As an alumnus of Harrison College he is a shining example of the importance of education in shaping our leaders, irrespective of socioeconomic origin.. He will be an enduring inspiration to successive cohorts of students.
The Rt Honourable Owen Seymour Arthur in his tenure as the longest serving Prime Minister of Barbados has made an indelible mark on the economic growth and development of Barbados. Under his stewardship Barbados also gained the reputation of a country that punches above its weight.
He was a visionary who has also made a transformative contribution to regional integration.
We shall eternally be indebted for his leadership and commitment to using his talent for the upliftment of the people of Barbados and the region. His legacy will live on for ever.
The Harrison College Queen’s College Alumni Association extends condolences to his family. May his soul Rest In Peace.
On behalf of The Bridgeman family and myself...We offer Sincere condolences to the Wife ..children and entire family of the late Honourable Prime Minister Professor Owen Seymour Arthur.. .May the peace and strength of God be with you all....also be with our Honourable Prime Minister.Mia Amour Mottley... Cabinet and Senate...Loved ones.. Friends and ALL Barbadians.... May he rest in peace .. rise in glory with The Lord....amen
My condolences to the family of the late Prof. The Rt. Hon. Owen Arthur.