PJ, Phillips hail Pringle

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

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Former Prime Minister PJ Patterson and Opposition Leader Dr Peter Phillips yesterday paid tribute to former Tourism Minister Frank Pringle who died at his home in Spring Farm, Rose Hall, St James Monday night.

Pringle, who served Jamaica as a senator and special envoy ambassador, was 88.

Yesterday, Patterson said that Pringle “served Jamaica with distinction, honour, unwavering commitment and with a great sense of love for his country and people”.

“He brought to the job of minister of tourism a clear vision for the development of the industry and country, as well as his vast first-hand knowledge of the sector,” added Patterson who served in a Michael Manley-led Cabinet with Pringle.

Noting that Pringle was a villa operator, founder and president of the Jamaica Association of Villas and Apartments, Patterson pointed out that the late politician was a founder and director of Tryall Golf and Country Club in Hanover who devoted much of his adult life to the modernisation, expansion and development of Jamaica's tourism sector.

“His contributions to tourism saw him working tirelessly for many years as a director of the Jamaica Tourist Board and Air Jamaica. He was for several years, Jamaica's representative to the Executive Council of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation and as ambassador and special envoy, spearheaded many foreign affairs initiatives on behalf of the country,” Patterson said.

“Frank Pringle's contributions to debates in the Senate demonstrated his wide knowledge and full grasp of local and global issues, his sharp mind, his civility and the balanced, mature and responsible approach he brought to political discourse. His political philosophy was shaped by his commitment to social justice and his acute sense of the possibility for development through progressive political action,” added Patterson.

He said that Pringle's humanity and social consciousness found expression in his fearless advocacy on behalf of the poor. “As founder and chairman of the Montego Bay Legal Aid Clinic he made his legal skills available to many Jamaicans who sought justice but could not afford legal representation,” Patterson said.

Phillips, in his tribute, said Pringle's long history of service to Jamaica dates back to 1953 when he was aide de camp to Governor Sir Hugh MacIntosh Foot.

“Perhaps the defining feature of Frank Pringle's contribution as a public servant was that despite being born into a family of substantial privilege, he devoted himself to the national movement and struggle of the Jamaican masses, which started with his association with Jamaica's Independence movement. He was one of the early pioneers in the struggle with Norman Manley and subsequently teamed up with Michael Manley to advance the cause of democratic socialism and self-reliance,” Dr Phillips said.

Noting that Pringle served as tourism minister from 1989 to 1992, Phillips said he was passionate about the development of the product and lobbied for its creative industries such as presenting the country's craft and entertainment to visitors, as he believed that the “Jamaicaness” of the visitor's experience would add richness to their vacation and stopover.

Phillips noted that in 2014, Pringle was conferred with the Order of Distinction in the rank of commander for his outstanding contribution to Jamaica in diplomacy, political representation and philanthropy, and for his enduring love and nurturing of the Jamaican people, spanning over five decades.

“His purpose was never about himself; the improvement of the quality of life of the Jamaican people was his cause. Jamaica owes him significant gratitude for his dedicated national service,” said Phillips.

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