Governor General Sir Clifford Husbands
Barbados’ longest-serving Governor General Sir Clifford Husbands who passed away yesterday at 91 was praised for his dignity in office and a life that reflected the best of Barbados.
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and Leader of the Opposition Mia Mottley, both lawyers who interacted with the former prosecutor and justice spoke glowingly of his approach to the various offices he held as he ascended to become Head of State.
Sir Clifford who was appointed as Barbados’ sixth Governor General in 1996 and served until his retirement on October 31, 2011, died at his home on Wednesday night around 11:30 p.m. in Mount Stanfast, St James.
He had served in the Attorney General’s office, first as a Legal Draughtsman between 1960 to 1963 and then as an Assistant to the Attorney General from 1963 until 1967.
He was Director of Public Prosecutons, a Supreme Court Judge, Justice of Appeal and also acted as Chief Justice before taking up the role of Governor General.
The former attorney also worked in legal services around the Caribbean, including Grenada, Antigua and Montserrat and the Attorney General’s Chambers in St Kitts, Nevis and Anguilla.
“Whatever he was called upon to do, he did to the best of his ability; as Director of Public Prosecutions, as Judge of the High Court, as Justice of Appeal, or as Governor General.
“I think Barbadians can learn much from the example which he set in all four of those capacities and also in his personal habits . . .,” Prime Minister Stuart stated.
Sir Clifford, as the chief prosecutor, exhibited impressive impartiality, said Stuart never confusing his role as director with securing conviction.
Opposition Leader Mottley in expressing deep regret at Sir Clifford’s passing said his 15 years as Head of State was characterised by charm, confidence, competence and a strong sense of duty.
“Sir Clifford believed in the importance of the rule of law and the maintenance of the integrity of our public institutions and their critical link to nation building. This was equally apparent across his entire distinguished legal career.
“We must not forget that it was the Report of the Steering Committee on Penal Reform which Sir Clifford chaired which paved the way for a new penal system for Barbados in 1998 . . .,” she said.
He was predeceased by his wife Lady Ruby Husbands. (AC)