ST JOHN’S, Antigua – Cabinet has decided to accord former member of parliament and attorney Vere Bird Jr an official funeral.
The information regarding the decision was conveyed to the media via press statement last evening.
Bird Jr, son of the nation’s founding father Sir Vere Cornwall Bird, and brother of former prime Minister Lester Bird, died on March 31 at the age of 76. He was diagnosed with liver cancer mere days before he died of heart failure, relatives said earlier.
According to the press statement, Cabinet appointed Acting Minister of Education, Youth, Sports and Gender Affairs Winston Williams as Chair of the Official Funeral Planning Committee.
The committee, along with the family of the deceased would meet shortly to commence planning the Thanksgiving Service.
Meantime, the statement further indicated, “Cabinet expressed its sympathy to his wife and children and the extended family and noted his dedicated service as a member of parliament and member of Cabinet holding the portfolios of minister of agriculture, lands and fisheries, minister of aviation, public information and utilities, minister of science, technology and communications and minister of trade, industry and business development.”
Cabinet also acknowledged his numerous contributions to the development of sports and the advancement of the legal profession.
“For over 30 years Vere Bird Jr has served Antigua & Barbuda with unswerving dedication. His love for his constituents and for people in general was a distinguishing trait. His love for the development of agriculture was evident as he dedicated countless hours on and off the job as Minister of Agriculture to assisting farmers,” the communiqué said.