August 17, 1946- July 2, 2016
SAN FERNANDO, Trinidad – Former Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Patrick Augustus Mervyn Manning died at hospital here on Saturday. He was 69.
He died of acute myeloid leukemia, his family said in a statement on his official Facebook page.
Manning who was the longest serving Member of Parliament in Trinidad and Tobago (1971-2015), was prime minister of the twin-island republic from 1991-95 and from 2001-2010. He was also political leader of the ruling People’s National Movement (PNM) from 1987 to 2010.
Born in San Fernando, Manning received his primary and secondary education in his home town and went on to study at the University of the West Indies(UWI) in Mona, Jamaica on a Texaco scholarship.
After earning a BSc. Special Honours degree in geology at UWI, he worked as refinery operator and later as a geologist with Texaco Trinidad Incorporated.
In 1971 he entered the political arena. That year he was a candidate in general elections, winning the San Fernando East constituency. He won this seat ten times in general elections.
Serving under Dr. Eric Williams, Trinidad and Tobago first prime minister, and then George Chambers, Manning was appointed a parliamentary secretary in several ministries, including Works and Transport, Industry and Commerce and Petroleum and Mines. He became a full-fledged Minister in 1981, holding the Industry and Commerce, and Information portfolios, then Energy and Natural Resources.
When the PNM lost the general elections in 1986, Manning was one of three PNM candidates who retained their seats. He became the Leader of the Opposition and within two months was elected to the post of Political Leader of the PNM.
In 1991, he was appointed Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago. He would again be appointed Prime Minister in 2001, 2002 and 2007.
After the PNM was defeated in general elections in 2010, Manning resigned as political leader of his party but continued as a parliamentary representative for the San Fernando East constituency.
Manning who underwent heart surgery in 1998 and had a pacemaker installed in 2004, suffered a stroke in 2012.He did not contest the 2015 general elections.
On June 28 last, he was admitted to the San Fernando General hospital after tests revealed an abnormally low blood count.
Manning was the recipient of several awards. In 2007 he received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from Medgar Evans university in New York.. He also received the “Democracy Prize ” from the Guyana Institute for Democracy for his work in upholding the principles of democracy in the Caribbean region.
He is survived by his wife. Hazel, and their two sons, Brian and David.
A state funeral is scheduled for Saturday.