Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 17th 2017 Contents tobagotoday.co.tt May 17 - 2017
Dumas dies four months
after heart surgery
An indomitable spirit within a towering
figure and strong presence.
That was how PNM lady vice chairman
Camille Robinson-Regis described late former
PNM minister Rennie "Stretch" Dumas who
died yesterday morning.
Former PNM Tobago East MP Dumas died
around 6.45 am at the Eric Williams Med-
ical Sciences (Mt Hope) Complex where he'd
had heart surgery four months ago, in Jan-
Dumas is reported to have developed com-
Chairman of PNM's Tobago Island Coun-
cil, Stanford Callendar, said Dumas was
"Our PNM family and sister Tobago branch
is in mourning and deep shock over the loss
of 'Stretch,' he'll be greatly missed,' Robin-
"Apart from being an MP and minister in
various portfolios, he was active in party
organs and was always assisted PNM's Wom-
en's League when needed."
Robinson-Regis added, "I'd spoken to him
when he was at hospital after his surgery
and later learned he'd developed complica-
tions. But I was shocked to learn he'd passed
"He'd always been active and was a PNM
General Council member right down to the
end. Our deepest condolences to his family
and Tobago's Island Council."
Born in Bethesda and schooled in Plymouth
and at UWI, Dumas had taught at primary
and secondary schools in Tobago. He was
involved in the T&T Unified Teachers Asso-
ciation over 1984 to 1990.
Popularly known as "Stretch" due to his
height, Dumas' booming voice was also a
hallmark at PNM Tobago gatherings and in
Parliament where he served since 2000. With
early political roots in the DAC-NAR, Dumas
switched to the PNM in 1986 when he con-
tested Tobago West, but lost. He later became
PNM's Tobago East MP in 2007.
However, Dumas had first served in the
Patrick Manning PNM administration as a
senator when the PNM was in Opposition
over 2001- to 2009.
When the PNM later won elections Dumas
was appointed a Minister of State in the
Office of the Prime Minister from December,
2001 to October, 2002.
Dumas was later appointed Public Utilities
and Environment minister from October,
2002 to November, 2003.
From November 2003 to November 2007 he
served as Local Government Minister. He was
also PNM's Mayaro Coordinator at one time.
Dumas had been co-ordinator, (Strategic
Oversight Unit) with the Tobago House of
Assembly under past THA leader Orville
However, he immediately resigned after
he was charged with assault in 2011. He was
found guilty in 2013.
Dumas, though, didn't feel the charges
would have affected his bid to become PNM's
Tobago leader when London retired last year.
Contesting the leadership, Dumas said he'd
served party and country for over 20 years
and was "ready to be Chief Servant."
Though he didn't win, Dumas obtained
the post of Education Officer in the Tobago
Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi, Agricul-
ture Minister Clarence Rambharath and
Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh as well
as Opposition colleagues also issued condo-
lences to Dumas' family.
UNC MP Ganga Singh said, "I'm saddened
by Rennie's untimely death. I have many
memories of him as a political colleague in
and out of Parliament."
A release from the Office of the Prime
Minister late yesterday also said that Prime
Minister Dr Keith Rowley had extended
condolences to Dumas' relatives.
Tobago seeks to regain romance brand
The Division of Tourism, Culture and
Transportation-Tobago House of Assembly
is seeking to regain the footing it lost, over
the last couple of years, in the weddings
and honeymoons tourism market. The
global tourism wedding market is said to
generate $300 billion annually.
This as the Division now looks at further
collaboration with stakeholders in the tour-
To this end, the Tourism Department
hosted more than 40 groups and business
owners, at a "Romance Niche Workshop"
at the Pigeon Point Pavilion last on May 9.
Major tourism stakeholders attended the
event including Duane Lyons, President of
the Tobago Bridal Association; Chris James,
President of the Tobago Hotel and Tourism
Association; Ted Greig, President of the
Tour Guide Association and Kaye Trotman,
President of the Tobago Unique Bed and
The participants were happy to speak with
Jacqueline Johnson, CEO of "Marry Carib-
, Certified Travel Counsellor and recip-
ient of the Caribbean Tourism Organisation's
"Medal of Excellence."
Speaking about Destination Tobago Johnson
said: "Tobago is what you call the 'new mar-
. The water, the food, the hospitality."
She added: "Tobago has it all and there-
fore Tobago with its strategic marketing will
no doubt make a profound difference in the
business of tourism, romance, weddings,
honeymoons and just leisure travel overall."
Commenting on the event, during last
week's Post-Executive Council Media Brief-
ing, Secretary of Tourism, Culture and
Transportation Nadine Stewart-Phillips
noted that many issues were discussed. The
issues ranged in scope from the responsi-
bilities of wedding planners and legal
requirements for destination weddings to
pricing for the local market.
The Secretary said she hoped the seminar
would result in Tobago capturing a part of
the niche wedding market.
"The hope is that this workshop will play
a significant role in the enhancement of this
niche, the area of brand identity positioning
and strategy and brand commitment," she
Representatives from associations in the wedding and honeymoon industry pose with workshop facilitator, Jacqueline Johnson, third from left.
From left to right: Ted Greig, president of the Tour Guides Association; Avion Hercules, marketing manager at the division; Jacqueline Johnson;
Kaye Trotman, president of the Tobago Unique Bed and Breakfast Association; Chris James, president of the Tobago Hotel and Tourism
Association; Duane Lyons, president of the Tobago Bridal Association.
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