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Sir Arlington Butler Dies Age 79

Sir Arlington Butler

Sir Arlington Butler

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Sir Arlington Butler with then Prime Minister Perry Christie.

By SANCHESKA DORSETT

Tribune Staff Reporter

Sdorsett@tribunemedia.net

SIR Arlington Butler, the first Speaker of the House of Assembly in an independent Bahamas, died Thursday night.

Sir Arlington was admitted to Princess Margaret Hospital a little over a week ago after battling a long illness. He was 79.

Opposition Leader Phillip 'Brave' Davis described Sir Arlington as "a gallant and courageous political warrior".

"Sir Arlington was an ardent proponent of and participant in this country’s progressive movement that ushered in Majority Rule, Independence and the modern Bahamas," he said in a statement.

"We thank him for his national service. A gallant and courageous political warrior with the battle scars as proof, Sir Arlie as he was affectionately called by friend and foe alike, always stood for what was right, accepting the consequences of his stance with dignity and grace like any good soldier.

"In all his battles, trials and tribulation," Mr Davis continued, "Sir Arlie never wavered in his commitment to advancing the common good.

"The PLP salutes his lifelong contribution to our country’s national development, particularly in the areas of education, diplomacy, youth and sports development. Sir Arlington’s long and distinguished service as the President of the Bahamas Olympic Committee has significantly impacted The Bahamas’ envied position on the international stage as a sports power. With his passing, an important era in sports development has come to an end. He will be sorely missed."

Sir Arlington G. Butler was born on January, 2 1938 in Nassau, Bahamas. He was educated at the Bahamas Teachers College, the University of Nottingham, and the Longborough Training College.

Prior to entering politics, Sir Arlington was Assistant headmaster Government High School and Prince William High School.

He became a Law Clerk, qualified as a lawyer and was called to the Bahamas Bar in 1974.

His career as a statesman included posts as Government Minister of several ministries including Minister of Public Safety and Transport from 1992 to 1995 and Minister of Public Works in 1995 in the Free National Movement (FNM) under the administration of former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham.

Sir Arlington Butler served as Speaker of the House of Assembly from October 18, 1972 to October 20, 1977.

Sir Arlington was also Chairman of the Broadcasting Corporation of the Bahamas, the Gaming Board and the Hotel Licensing Authority.

He also served as The Bahamas Ambassador to the United States.

In 1996, he was knighted by Her Majesty the Queen as Commander of the Order of St Micheals at St George (KCMG).

Sir Arlington spent over 50 years in the service and administration of sports in the Bahamas. He served as President of the Bahamas Olympic Committee for almost 40 years.

Sir Arlington’s first wife, the late Lady Shelia Butler, died in 2013 following a long illness.

He is survived by his wife, Hazel Butler; his children, Arvin, Arlington Gibao, Kristal Lafleur and Kara Butler-Wight, and other relatives.

Comments

John 1 week, 2 days ago

A true Bahamian who never gave up his British association, and eloquently so. May his soul rest in peace.

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TalRussell 1 week, 2 days ago

Comrade Arlington Butler, you left us for the better after a sterling run 79 years.
Not even paid tongues are willing to dirtied-up your reputation. You walked clean in and out the political arena without the need to take stains out of your inspiring and forward thinking ways.
Rest in Peace Wonderful Comrade, the “Eloquent Englishman” Arlington. It was indeed an privilege to have known you from your beginner political days.
Arlington, you made your family and all of Bahamaland - eternally beautifully proud of you.
Arlington, you were my political kind of Vince Ferguson's, man’s. man’s.

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sheeprunner12 1 week, 2 days ago

Vince Ferguson ........ BOL ....... check his record as a public school principal ...... We love to just say good things about people when they die, instead of giving a balanced analysis of their lives (especially those in politics).

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TalRussell 1 week, 2 days ago

Comrade, so obvious you know nothing about the ' Houses of Aquinas, Benedict, DePorres and Dominic.

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sheeprunner12 1 week, 2 days ago

Let the truth about this colonial selfish man be revealed .......... ask the BOC and PLP dem who really know this man.

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Honestman 1 week, 2 days ago

Contemptible comment when his family are immersed in grief.

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John 1 week, 2 days ago

53 years in public service..how many days did you give?

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tell_it_like_it_is 1 week, 2 days ago

I don't think this is the appropriate time for political rhetoric. Someone passed away. Family members probably read what's posted here.
To the bereaved, I wish you heartfelt condolences as I know firsthand how devastating it is when you lose someone close to you. Prayers are with you.

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bogart 1 week, 2 days ago

In sorrow over the passing of Sir Arli a truly larger than life Bahamian. Will miss that very proper voice I last recalled holding the door open for you at the bank and joking with you on the line. A man who followed his beliefs. A tru tru Bahamian. Thank you for your service. May you rest in peace. Amen

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BONEFISH 1 week, 1 day ago

If this country had more men with the personal convictions of the late Vince Ferguson, this country will be a better place. A man who stood up for his convictions. Condolences to the family of the late Sir Arlington Butler. He served in several areas of nation building. A true bahamian patriot.

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sheeprunner12 1 week, 1 day ago

It is so funny that those Majority Rule-era leaders were knighted and made into saints by the political pundits ....... but look at the corrupt spawn that they created in the 1970s and 1980s ............... by their fruits they are known. They all held on to power too long, thus destroying what they created.

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TalRussell 1 week, 1 day ago

The transformation and message Comrade Little Richard, few have ever seen or heard.

......../////https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PVq5Q1W7X30

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John 1 week ago

@sheeprunner you are so wrong. Most of the corruption in this country today has foreign influence. Either by way of Bahamians living abroad and being ‘schooled ‘ or foreigners coming here and teaching Bahamians to ‘t’ief ‘. The you must also remember when Bahamians (especially black folk) gained the reins of power in the 1960’s , they barely had high school education. In fact most of the electorate was illiterate and had to be taught on how to mark their ‘X’ and who to vote for. So it was not difficult for those who came to power even as recently as a decade ago to hold on to that power

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Porcupine 1 week ago

That "the corruption in this country today has foreign influence" is entirely devoid of honesty. Everything different is foreign, by definition, good and bad. Whether good or bad, a particular society has to have the soil to allow something to flourish. Bahamians are so quick to blame others for the wholesale failure of their Country. From raising their children, if they know who they are, to the utter lack of civility on and off the roads. Theft, rape, muggings, murders, no law and order to speak of. Overwhelmingly "Christian" there is no commandment nor law which matters to the majority, it appears to me. The laws are for foreigners, certainly not for Bahamians, in their own country. The newspapers highlight daily why more and more decent people will shun The Bahamas, either to do business, or to lead a safe and healthy life. I suspect most well-off educated Bahamians have an exit strategy, for it doesn't take a genius to see the overwhelming trends which are occurring here. If anything is to change John, it will be on the day when Bahamians are able to take responsibility for their own failings. I don't see that happening anytime soon.

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sheeprunner12 6 days, 22 hours ago

Personally, I will only be happy when everyone who served directly under Pindling in Government has died ......... they were ALL complicit in ruining this country in the first 20 years after Independence ........ Doesn't matter what political colour they ended up wearing.

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