The passing of former Prime Minister, Patrick Augustus Mervyn Manning is, personally, of great sorrow to me. As inevitable as we know death to be, the loss of such an outstanding statesman leaves an enduring void in the national psyche.
Mr Manning was a friend with whom I shared a frank relationship that began in the seventies and continued throughout his tenures as prime minister and thereafter.
His professional focus was always for the well-being of our nation, its advancement and its long-term future. He upheld and pursued that focus boldly, unrelentingly, uncompromisingly and, at times, single-mindedly.
As we collectively mourn his loss, I sincerely commend his sterling qualities to the comfort of his family and thank them for sharing with the nation a true and committed statesman and a person who was always prepared to go beyond and who will not be forgotten.
Ambassador Christopher R Thomas,
Former Independent Senator and
Chairman of the Public and Police Service Commissions