Anyone familiar with former trade unionist / prime minister / leader of the opposition Basdeo Panday would be familiar with an oft-used (by him) expression regarding a fight between a lion and himself. As the silver fox would often opine: 'Should you ever see me in a fight with a lion, feel sorry for the lion!'
Yesterday, marked the end of an era in local politics as Mr Panday opted to withdraw his name from consideration for the upcoming national polls. His move, effectively brings thirty four years of unbroken parliamentary service to an end.
Mr Panday's withdrawal from the national political scene has been long in coming and fraught with every type of misstep and misspeak that one would expect of an old-school leader who has suddenly lost the support of his base and his relevance in a changing world. Be it the yet unresolved corruption matter, the arrogant and almost flippant disposal of political allies, or even his last post-election speech - there are many reasons to dislike Mr Panday. It is therefore almost befitting that he has been replaced by his former devotee, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, but not without first inflicting as much damage that a wounded lion could.
Still, the future looks bright. Hopefully, in time, history will be kind to his legacy. Until then, it would be best if he accepted his defeat like a man and stepped aside. There is a great air of hope hanging over Trinidad & Tobago. And in the words of well put placard: "IF ON JANUARY 24 KAMLA BEAT A LION THEN ON MAY 24 SHE WILL SURELY BEAT A JACKASS".