Sixty one years ago he made history when, at age 20, he became the colony’s first ethnic broadcaster. Less than a decade later he was sitting in the cabinet, an equal among the most influential leaders of the time. Today in retirement he maintains the same enthusiasm that I felt the very first time I met him many years ago when I was a young reporter and he was the Minister of Health.

To my great surprise he introduced himself to me, not that he needed an introduction, and invited me to drop in at his office "at any time". It was a brilliant public relations stroke for a senior government minister who understood the value of good media relations better than most of his colleagues, including his friend and political mentor, the late Dr Eric Williams.

Picture: Dr. Williams speaking to T & T Muslims

It was that understanding of communication that took Kamal from obscurity to the national and international stage. He understood his environment, blended in and always had time to listen to what people were saying. It earned him respect and admiration and opened doors that would otherwise have remained shut.