Arthur Napoleon Raymond Robinson
3rd President of Trinidad and Tobago,
From the 19th March 1997 to 17th March 2003.
3rd Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago,
From the 12th January 1987 to the 19th November 1991.
Born on the 16th December 1926,Calder Hall, Tobago.
Died 9th April 2014, (aged 87) Port of Spain, Trinidad. He died due to a number of ailments including a stroke and prostate complications.
Married to Patricia Jean (formally Rawlins) and had two children by the names of David and Ann-Margaret.
Some of his hobbies were Reading, Walking, Swimming and Music.
He was Educated at Castara Methodist School where his father served as headmaster, then at Bishop's High School, Tobago where he obtained Higher School Certificate with a distinction in latin and competed for an Island Scholarship (The first Bowles Scholar in 1939 and the first House Scholarship winner 1942).
He got a Bachelor of Laws Degree from London University, as an external student. In 1951 he left for the United Kingdom where he was called to the bar at Inner Temple and where obtained a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from St. John's College, Oxford
St. John's College, Oxford (Second Class Honours Degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics). Became a Barrister-at-Law in Trinidad and Tobago in 1955. Worked at the Chambers of Sir Courtney Hannays from 1957 to 1961. Was elected to Federal Parliament in 1958. Trinidad and Tobago Parliament as a representative for Tobago in 1961. Honours/Awards Presidential Medal of Honour from California Lutheran University 1987. Knighthood of Honour and of Merit by an Ecumenical Foundation of the Knights of St. Johns. The Distinguished International Criminal Law Award of 1977. Distinguished Human Development Award of 1983.
Simon Bolivar Award, Venezuela's highest award. A.N.R. Robinson International Airport, replacing the name Crown Point International Airport. Tobago Medal of Honour (Tobago's highest award) Author of The New Frontier, New Africa,The Mechanics of Independence and others. Opposition Member 13 January, 1992 - 6 October, 1995. A representative of Trinidad and Tobago on the Council of the University of the West Indies. A director of Trinidad and Tobago's Industrial Development Corporation. Served in the parliament of the West Indies Federation between 1958 and 1960.
In 1961 he was elected to the Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago where he served as a member of parliament for Tobago. Was the first Chairman of the Tobago House of Assembly. Worked for internal self-government for Tobago, which lead to the Tobago House of Assembly Act in 1980. He was the country's first Minister of Finance from the 19th December 1961 to the 25th August 1966 and again on the 11th November 1966 to the 24th May 1971. Was responsible for the restructuring of the country's financial institutions and the reform of financial and monetary policy on the achievement of independence. He led the struggle for decentralization and devolution of authority to Tobago from 1976-1986. Was the leader of the Democratic Action Congress which won both Tobago seats in the 1976 General Elections. In 1981 he formed an alliance with the United Labour Front (ULF) which was under the leadership of Basdeo Panday, the Tapia House Movement under the leadership of Lloyd Best, to form the National Alliance for Reconstruction. They were successful in the local government elections in 1983.
From 1986-1989, as Prime Minister, he was responsible for the economic and financial measures that brought economic improvement to his country after a seven-year period of progressive decline. He was responsible for several Caribbean initiatives, including the Caribbean Regional Economic Conference, the proposed Caribbean Court of Appeal and the West Indian Commission chaired by Sir Shridath Ramplal, former Secretary-General of the Commonwealth. He has represented Trinidad and Tobago at many international conferences and at the United Nations where he has been acknowledged as a leading proponent of an International Criminal Jurisdiction. An Opposition Member from the 24th September 1976 to the 18th September 1981 and again from the 13th January 1992 to the 6 October 1995. Served as Prime Minister and Minister of Finance and the Economy from the 12th January 1987 to the 19th November 1991. As Minister Extraordinaire from the 27th November 1995 to the 14th February 1997. He served as Minister of External Affairs. Has been a consultant to the United Nations Secretary-General on crime and the abuse of power. Was a director of the Foundation for the Establishment of an International Criminal Court for over 15 years.
Has been representative of the constituency of Tobago East in the Parliament of Trinidad and Tobago. As Prime Minister, he was responsible for several regional initiatives, including the Caribbean Regional Economic Conference, the proposed Caribbean Court of Appeal and the West Indian Commission. He has represented Trinidad and Tobago at many international conferences and at the United Nations where he has been acknowledged as a leading proponent of an International Criminal Jurisdiction.
As President, he was called upon to decide which political party would form the Government after the election results produced a deadlock of 18 seats for the two main political parties. Was the leader of the Democratic Action Congress won both Tobago seats in the 1976 General Elections. In 1981 Robinson allied with the United Labour Front (ULF), under the leadership of Basdeo Panday, and the Tapia House Movement, under the leadership of Lloyd Best, to form the National Alliance for Reconstruction. It entered into an alliance with the Organisation for National Reconstruction, under the leadership of Karl Hudson-Phillips, to successfully fight the Trinidad and Tobago local elections, 1983. Building on this victory the four parties combined to form the National Alliance for Reconstruction (NAR). And went on to become Prime Minister through the National Alliance For Reconstruction. During the 1990 coup attempt by the Jamaat al Muslimeen, he and much of his cabinet were held hostage for six days by gunmen under the leadership of Yasin Abu Bakr. When instructed to order the army to stop firing on the Red House, where they were held hostage, Robinson instead instructed them to "attack with full force," an action which led to him getting beaten by his captors. He was also shot in his leg. He succeeded Noor Hassanali as President and served in office from 19th March 1997 to the 17th March 2003. The first active politician to be elected to the Presidency and was the first presidential candidate who was elected unopposed.