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Former CARICOM facilitator in Guyana’s political dialogue dies

Last Updated on Wednesday, 22 September 2021, 21:23 by Denis Chabrol

Former Barbados Attorney General Maurice King, who had been a CARICOM facilitator in dialogue between the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) and the People’s National Congress (PNC) in 1999,died on Tuesday.

He was 85 years old.

In the aftermath of the 1997 general and regional elections that had ended in much turmoil and dispute that had led to the Herdmanston Accord, CARICOM had appointed Mr. King to monitor the dialogue between the then President of Guyana and then Opposition Leader Desmond Hoyte.

At that dialogue, both parties had identified the need for house-lot distribution and the reconstitution of an Elections Commission.

The scion of a legal and political family, son of prominent attorney Sir James Cliviston King and sibling of lawyer Edmund King, Sir Maurice’s public service stretches back to 1964 as chairman of the Natural Gas Corporation, now known as the National Petroleum Corporation, from 1964 to 1976.

He was one of the country’s first senators in newly independent Barbados from 1967 to 1975.

Sir Maurice was ambassador to the United States and permanent representative to the Organisation of American States and the United States in 1976.

Elected to three terms in the House of Assembly as Member of Parliament for Christ Church West Central from 1981 to 1994, he was made Attorney General in Errol Barrow’s cabinet in 1986.

Under the Erskine Sandiford administration, he served as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and International Business from 1989 to 1993.

The Queen’s Counsel was the DLP’s long-time lawyer.

Sir Maurice was knighted in 2009.