[xml][/xml]
The Bahamas Weekly Facebook The Bahamas Weekly Twitter
News : Bahamas Information Services Updates Last Updated: May 7, 2015 - 7:57:38 AM


Labour Union Leaders Celebrate Sir Clifford Darling’s life
By Gena Gibbs
May 31, 2012 - 3:10:12 PM

Email this article
 Mobile friendly page
PM-Christie-speaks-about-Sir-Clifford.jpg
Prime Minister Christie addresses the congregation of Yamacraw Zion Baptist Church, reflecting on the successful leadership of Sir Clifford Darling, as president of the Taxi Cab Union and the general strike of 1958. (BIS Photo / Gena Gibbs).


Nassau, The Bahamas – Trade Union leaders on May 27 celebrated Sir Clifford Darling's contribution to The Bahamas, in a service at Yamacraw Zion Baptist Church. Sir Clifford was the first Minister of Labour and National Insurance.

Also attending the service were Governor-General Sir Arthur Foulkes and Lady Foulkes, Prime Minister the Rt. Hon. Perry G. Christie, and Minister of Labour and National Insurance Shane D. Gibson.

The service recalled the national impact of Sir Clifford since 1946, when he began his personal involvement in the trade union movement after joining the Bahamas Taxi Cab Union. Eventually, he became the secretary general in 1949 and was elected president in 1957.
Their-Excellencies-Sir-Arthur-GG-and-Lady-Foulkes.jpg
Their Excellencies Sir Arthur GG and Lady Foulkes


Prime Minister Christie questioned how the story could be accurately recorded, as seen through Sir Clifford's eyes. He noted that he would continue "to try to persuade" Governor General Sir Arthur Foulkes to capture the passion of the times that led to Majority Rule.

“The growing into public prominence of these political personalities that so impacted our country, and the future generations of Bahamians being able to explain how men and women of the 20s and the 30s, without the education that the president of the TUC spoke of, going to an all-age school, not regular high school, not regular college, but yet being able to command the attention of a country, being able to ascend to the highest office, being able to capture and use for the benefit of those, who within the organisation they belong to, the gifts that they were given,” said Prime Minister Christie.
Clifford-Darling.jpg
Clifford Darling



Under the leadership of Sir Clifford, the Taxi Cab Union of 1957 and other trade union leaders challenged the government and social elite to recognise the socio-economic inequity of Bahamian citizens through the significance of the transportation industry.

The unified action was successful in opening a new era of industrial relations in The Commonwealth of The Bahamas, bringing all workers together to fight for the right to work, exempt of exploitation.

“It was a special time and a special generation. Men and women who did not have -- like Sir Cliff -- the opportunity for higher learning but yet who were almost like ‘professors of appreciation’ of working to ensure that the generation that followed, like myself, had the opportunity to receive the best education that the country would allow,” said Prime Minister Christie.

Mr. Christie recalled that as a child, he knew Sir Clifford, and that his own father was a taxi-driver and one of the longest serving treasurersin the union.

"During the general strike, I remember him coming home because he had the responsibility of purchasing ‘food stuffs’ for people on the strike. I therefore shared in the ascendance of Sir Clifford Darling.”

In 1973, Sir Clifford was appointed under the Pindling Administration to protect the rights of Bahamian workers, as a committed advocate for the early struggle for the freedom of trade unions in The Bahamas.

“I don’t want to get caught up in the controversy of ‘who did what’, but in the full layout of history, we will truly be challenged to determine easily the greatest contributor to the labour movement in this country. He [Sir Clifford] was one of them; the truth be told,” said Prime Minister Christie.

“That is why I admonished His Excellency [Sir Arthur] to tell the story through his own eyes. But the truth be told, Sir Clifford played the leading role in moving the country to a general strike in 1958. And if you really want to determine accurately ‘who did what’, that general strike was the catalyst for the movement to majority rule in 1967.”

Sir Clifford distinguished himself as a Union Leader, a Senator, a Member of Parliament for the Englerston Constituency, and as a minister in the government. In both State and Church, the service was congregated by some of the holders of the highest offices in The Bahamas, who came to say thank you and recognise a life served for the furtherance and development of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.

“I succeeded him as the minister responsible for National Insurance. And so that you understand history, he succeeded Milo Butler as the first, when Milo Butler was the Minister, and we were beginning the genesis of National Insurance. Sir Clifford came in, I, then, came in, and of all things, I was followed by a man by the name of Hubert Ingraham. So you could see, how history has impacted ‘That Movement’,” said Prime Minister Christie.



Bookmark and Share




© Copyright 2012 by thebahamasweekly.com

Top of Page

Receive our Top Stories



Preview | Powered by CommandBlast

Bahamas Information Services Updates
Latest Headlines
Bahamas Minister of Financial Services remarks to Exporters' Meeting on the Trade Information Service Portal
AEG Pledges Hurricane Relief Supplies to NEMA
Hon. Fred Mitchell Communication to Parliament on Immigration Matters
Minister Dorsett on regulation of hazardous waste management, disposal and movement in The Bahamas
Bahamas Customs to Celebrate International Customs Day
PM Christie: IHIMS Represents A New Day in Bahamian Healthcare
'Queen of Junkanoo' Christina Fernander Commended by Minister of Youth, Sports & Culture
Bahamas School of Nursing calls on the Governor General
Belgian Ambassador presents letters to Bahamas Ministry of Foreign Affairs
International Education Award builds connections between The Bahamas & Kamloops, British Columbia
Minister Mitchell Addresses the Topic, "So You Want to be a Foreign Minister"
Mrs. Christie Presented with Fly Fishing Permit
Prime Minister Christie's remarks at MSC Cruise Port Ground Breaking Ceremony at Ocean Cay
Public Service and UB Sign MOU for Training and Assessment
Learning about Majority Rule through walking classroom
Minister Darville Says Crime is Down in Grand Bahama
United Methodist Mission Volunteers call on Bahamas Governor General
DPM Davis presented with Sailing Club floating trophy
MSC Breaks Ground on Cruise Port with a Conservation Aspect
Hon. Fred Mitchell MP on the Passing of Rev. Wilbur Outten
Bahamasair Makes Inaugural Flight to Haiti
Ambassador McWeeney attends Diplomatic Corps gathering with Pope Francis at The Vatican
Bishop Boyd: Do Justice, Love Kindness and Walk Humbly
Greenslade Reports 26 Percent Decrease in Overall Crime - New Police Initiatives, Public Cooperation Cited as Reasons
The Bahamas Legal Year Opens
PM Christie: The Legacy of January 10th Belongs to All Bahamians
Newry addresses 'The Dream of '67' at UB 50th Anniversary of Majority Rule Symposium
Legal Year Opens in Grand Bahama Island
Bahamas Foreign Affairs & Immigration on USA's Wet Foot / Dry Foot Policy coming to an end
50 Years of Majority Rule Celebrated in a People’s March, Speeches, Culture & Entertainment
Darville says Grand Bahama economic growth will take a combined effort of key institutions
Oakwood University Calls on Bahamas Governor General
Governor General visits Bahamian centenarian Mrs. Irene McQuay-Smith
The Bahamas Reaches 'Landmark and Historic' Airspace Agreement says PM Christie
Dame Marguerite Laid Wreath at Graveside of Sir Lynden on the 50th Anniversary of Majority Rule
Drake University Faculty and Students call on Bahamas Governor General
Public Notice: Voter Registration Drive in San Salvador
Photos of 50th Anniversary of Majority Rule March
Royal Bahamas Police Force annual parade and church service
$250,000 Worth of Hurricane Relief Supplies Donated to The Bahamas