The recent deaths of Reverend Dr Dale Bisnauth and Pandit Reepu Daman Persaud, who both served as ministers and MPs in successive People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) administrations, represent a “significant loss” to both the governing party and the government.
This is according to PPP Executive Secretary Zulfikar Mustapha, who told a news conference on Monday at Freedom House that up to the time of their deaths, the two men, who were both politicians and cultural figures, continued to serve their country.
Bisnauth, 76, died last Wednesday after a heart attack. He had served as Education Minister and Labour Minister. Persaud, meanwhile, who had been Agriculture Minister and later Parliamentary Affairs Minister, died early Sunday morning. Bisnauth was a long-serving pastor at Burns’ Memorial Presbyterian Church and a historian, while Persaud was the founder of the Guyana Hindu Dharmic Sabha.
Mustapha stated that the cultural and religious background and contribution of both Bisnauth and Persaud reflect the diversity within the PPP and the successive PPP/C governments.
He also noted that both men were part of the team selected by late president Dr Cheddi Jagan for his government in 1992 and they went on to play “a crucial role” in the rebuilding of the nation.
“We wish to express our sympathies to the relatives and friends and followers of these two leaders and urge all to be inspired by their work and contributions,” Mustapha stated on behalf of the party.
PPP/C MP Irfaan Ali, who is also Housing and Water Minister, stated that both men were distinguished and respected across Guyana.
They both served Guyana and sought to bridge divides, he said, while noting that Persaud was also very instrumental in the constitutional reform and also in the transformation of the agriculture sector.